Trashing Plastic in Aruba?

Aruba is cleaning up their act.

Just a couple years ago young people living on Aruba never gave a thought to being surrounded by trash. That accumulating trash included a lot of plastic bags.

In a public meeting held on June 28, 2016, Aruba’s Members of Parliament unanimously voted in favor of the proposal to ban single-use plastic bags. The law will take effect as of January 1, 2017 when all retailers and vendors will no longer be able to distribute or sell carry-out plastic bags intended for single-use at the point-of-sale.

Aruba conservatively uses approximately 30 million single-use plastic carry-out bags per year.

A large percentage of this consumption is derived from the domestic usage, although a certain amount is also induced by the 1.2 million tourists and shopping visitors to Aruba. While cruise visitors will typically take their carry-out bags received back with them aboard, hotel and timeshare guests will characteristically receive and use (retail and grocery) plastic-bags.

The plastic bag ban and its communication strategy have been designed to encourage more corporate responsibility on the supply spectrum, and responsible consumerism on the demand spectrum. Managing waste on islands, especially those heavily dependent on tourism, has been an ongoing challenge.

Being an island community helps motivate people to apply concepts of “Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, and Respect” seeing there is limited or practically non-existent access to “Recycling” facilities.

Experts believe residents will best respond primarily to positive encouragement, hype, enjoyment, patriotism and pride.

The logo of Aruba’s national campaign and educational platform, with both supply-driven and demand-driven activities, includes an image of one happy turtle with the tagline and call-to-action “My bag is Reusable” in Aruba’s local language Papiamento.

With the overwhelmingly positive response thus far within the community, Aruba can be optimistic that the implementation phase starting in January will also be well-received.

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About Jake Johnson 249 Articles
Jake Johnson is a full-time travel bum, who prefers warm climates where the women wear less clothing. We've tried to teach him things like manners and diplomacy, but we've given up and simply rely on our editors to remove the most offensive bits from his articles. We take no responsibility for his inane ramblings opinions - they are his own.
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