I have been getting asked about this Environment Management (Amendment) Bill 2020, so here is what it is…

The use of styrofoam and its related polystyrene products has to stop by July 2021.

This comes after the amendment of the Environment Management Act 2005 in the Fiji Parliament in December 2020.

The Environment Management Act 2005 (‘Act’) sets out the framework for Fiji’s environmental law.

In 2019, the Act was amended to ban certain types of plastic bags in order to reduce the harmful effects of plastic bags on the environment, particularly the ocean.

This Environment Management (Amendment) Bill 2020 (‘Bill’) seeks to amend the Act to ban the use of polystyrene products, which as a distinct form of plastic is also harmful to the environment.

The Bill amends the Act to insert a new section 45B after section 45A. The new section prohibits the manufacture, sale, supply, distribution or use of polystyrene products.

However, a grace period from 1 January 2021 to 31 July 2021 is set out to allow businesses most affected by the polystyrene ban to exhaust their current stock.

Environment Management (Amendment) Bill 2020
Environment Management (Amendment) Bill 2020

Environment Management (Amendment) Bill 2020

Bill-No.-42-Environment-Management-Amendment-Bill-2020_compressed

The use of styrofoam and its related polystyrene products has to stop by July 2021.

While speaking on the bill, Attorney General, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says the new section prohibits the manufacture, sale, supply, distribution or use of polystyrene products from 1st January 2021.

Under the bill, a person who manufactures a polystyrene product commits an offence and is liable upon conviction to a fine not exceeding $500,000 or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding 7 years or both.

The bill also states that a person who sells, supplies or distributes a polystyrene product to another person, or makes a polystyrene product available to a customer for carrying goods purchased, or to be purchased from a retailer commits an offence, and is liable upon conviction to a fine not exceeding $150,000 or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding 2 years or both.

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