Can Cebu become the country’s 1st single-use plastic-free city? Public hearing set on April 30

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THE CEBU City Council is set to hold a public hearing on April 30 for a proposed law that will ban the use of a wide range of single-use plastic products. Among those invited to attend are representatives from the Cebu Chamber of Commerce, Inc., plastic manufacturers, fast food chains, and public market vendors, among others. Last Tuesday, the council approved the recommendation of its environment committee on the proposed ordinance of Councilors Eduardo Rama R. Jr. and Raymond Alvin N. Garcia. “The proposed ordinance prohibits the sale and use of single-use plastic products such as plastic bags, straw, coffee stirrer, soda and water bottles, food packaging and the like,” reads a portion of the committee report. Councilor Jerry L. Guardo, environment committee chair, said the proposed law will be good for nature and help in the city’s waste management, but they also need to consider the affected industries. Under the proposal, the Cebu City Environment and Natural Resources Office will draw up a three-year phase-out plan once the ordinance is approved. A similar pending proposal, authored by Councilor Eugenio F. Gabuya, Jr., sets an immediate implementation of the single-use plastic ban. — The Freeman