Latin America and Caribbean ready to close the door on plastic waste

A report by Margriet Verleg for Recycling.

Belize and Guatemala are the latest countries to join UN Environment’s Clean Seas campaign to ‘drastically reduce the consumption of single-use plastics and eradicate the use of microbeads’.

Jamaica will start implementing a ban on plastic bags, styrofoam and straws next year. Already on board are Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Granada, Guyana, Honduras, Panama, Peru, Saint Lucia and Uruguay.
Interestingly, Guatemala is using so-called “bio-fences” – made from recovered plastic debris – to collect plastic scrap from waterways. This innovative approach will alles communities to collect it, dispose of it, or recycle it. Honduras, the Dominican Republic and Panama have also adopted these plastic structures.
‘We are very proud to join the Clean Seas campaign and showcase the efforts of communities around the country who are following the Guatemalan Way to tackle plastic pollution. The bio-fences are a creative, low-cost technology made in-house and that is what makes them so popular,’ comments Alfonso Alonzo, Minister of Environment and Natural Resources of Guatemala.
Back in 2016, Antigua and Barbuda were the first nations in Latin America and the Caribbean to ban plastic bags.

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