Government’s move to ban oil-based plastics in favour of a biodegradable variety should not be seen as an excuse for litter bugs, who will soon face tougher laws, Minister of Maritime Affairs and the Blue Economy Kirk Humphrey has said.
Legislation is also coming to allow for separating garbage at source for recycling, he hinted.
Humphrey said: “It is still an offensive act to throw a bookcase plate or cup through a window, into the gutter. It is equally offensive. The reality is it may disintegrate a little faster, but the act itself of disposing of the garbage in such a way is still offensive.”
The minister told a media briefing workshop at the ministry’s Charnocks, Christ Church office that Minister of Environment and National Beautification Trevor Prescod would be bringing a Cabinet paper soon for legislation on littering and separation of garbage at source.
Humphrey added: “We will also be bringing legislation with very stiff penalties to Barbadians who will also have responsibility for cleaning their space. So, the house where you live, your land space, the land in front of you will now be your responsibility. There will be penalties for littering and keeping your own place untidy by law.”
He said the new law would also target those who throw litter through vehicle windows.
The pending legislation would also seek to bring about an expansion in the Returnable Containers Act to allow consumers to return plastic bottles, including containers for coffee and laundry detergent, he added.
“We feel that we made additional accommodations, so it is right for those who continue to violate to face stiffer penalties,” he said.