Ministry of Environment and Forestry to Evaluate Eco-Labels for Plastic Bags

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Jakarta (Greeners) – Ministry of Environment and Forestry will standardized plastic shopping bags and degradable bioplastics amid the demands to improve the national standards in accordance to latest issue and technology of plastic waste.

Noer Adi Wardojo, head of Environment and Forestry Standardization Center, said that with vast development on plastic waste technology and issue, the ministry agreed to evaluate plastics with SNI labels issued in 2016.

Wardojo said that plastics with SNI labels previously standardized are no longer suitable with current plastic issues development.

“Previously, the issue of microplastics was not that strong in 2016, and plastics with SNI [labels] which we issued turned out to be dissolved into small plastics, microplastics,” he said in Jakarta, recently. “So, we need to improve that at the moment, to identify and classify plastics according to its uses.”

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Furthermore, he said that plastic with SNI label, — SNI 7188.7:2016 –, is biodegradable however it contains controversial additive substance as it dissolve plastic into microplastics.

“The controversy is the breakdown process, because of the chemical chain eaten by microbes, dissolved into smaller plastics. Those are the ones will be reviewed. Then, we will ensure that it will be perfectly degraded,” he said.

Furthermore, he said that this evaluation will not only aiming to plastic shopping bags or single use plastics but also all types of plastics, such as sachets, and food packaging.

“So, not only plastic shopping bags but other types of plastics. It will be discussed also on the suitable plastic materials and what kinds of products and technology, technically, to be able to be responsible use for the environment. So, it will no longer discuss on plastic products, one by one,” he said.

READ ALSO: Ministry of Environment and Forestry Issued National Ecolabels for Bioplastic 

Furthermore, he said that the evaluation will also discuss the types of plastic which will be the reference for the ministerial regulation on reducing plastic bag waste.

“We receive letters from Directorate General of Waste and Toxic and Hazardous Waste Management at the ministry on the review of plastics with SNI label for plastic shopping bag. The result the SNI plastics will become the reference of plastic bag included in the ministerial decree. It will be under the authority of the directorate general whether it will be a phase out or banned. We will approach regulators from directorate general to discuss the technical standards for plastic materials, which ones will high risks to pollute the environment,” he said.

Novrizal Tahar, director of waste management at the ministry, said that the evaluation will be the reference for drafting the ministerial regulation. The finalization, Tahar added, will be under the Standarization Center at the ministry and the result will be submitted to the directorate general as alternative use of environmentally friendly plastic bag.

“Mas Adi evaluates SNI label of environmentally friendly plastic bag, meanwhile I will [be in charge] with the ministerial regulation of reducing plastic bag waste. Currently, we are waiting for recommendation for SNI to be one of the reference in the ministerial regulation. So, basically one of the issues why the ministerial regulation is not finished because of the on-going discussion on SNI evaluation,” he said.

Reports by Dewi Purningsih