“The Government admits it has no idea what effect a ban on single-use plastic bags will have on New Zealand’s waterways and coastal environments,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.
Environment Associate Minister Eugenie Sage confirmed in response to a written parliamentary question from Mr Seymour that “robust data is not available on the proportion of single-use plastic shopping bags used by New Zealanders, which end up in waterways.”
“The Government has decided to punish all New Zealanders who find single-use plastic bags convenient and dispose of them responsibly without any evidence to suggest these bags are the major cause of pollution to New Zealand’s coastal and marine environments,” says Mr Seymour.
“It’s shocking that the Government would force all New Zealanders to change their shopping habits without proof that they’re causing a problem.
“Just like the ban on oil and gas, the virtue-signalling Green Party have put no thought into the effects of their feel-good policies.
“The Green Party’s ban will end up producing worse environmental outcomes as supermarkets replace single-use bags with heavier plastic alternatives.
“It’s a classic case of good intentions and tragic consequences.”