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January 18, 2017 / 20 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘plastic bags’

Israel’s Controversial Plastic Bag Law Delayed

Thursday, November 27th, 2014

On January 1, Israel was expected to implement a controversial plastic bag law, designed to kill plastic shopping bags in stores and replace them with more inconvenient, but reusable canvas bags.

MK Miri Regev (Likud) who heads the Knesset’s Interior and Protection of the Environment Committees announced that the controversial law was being delayed for the foreseeable future. Regev said the law is a difficult and complicated one, and requires a serious discussion about its downsides, and therefore should not be rushed into implementation.

The Department of Environmental Protection is pushing to have the law implemented quickly.

Regev said the cost of the law is too high for the public to bear, and wanted to make sure that this law wasn’t turning into someone’s cash cow, specifically referring to Israel’s Treasury department which overseas all tax collection, according to a Ynet report.

The law set the price for plastic shopping bags at 30 agurot (7.8 cents) a bag, which is 800% more than the cost of the bag. It is an unnecessary expense on the public, Regev said.

The committee pointed out the absurdity that the environment-tax law designated 80% of the revenue from the new bag tax directly to the Treasury department, while only 20% of the revenue would go towards environmental projects.

She said the Treasury Department estimated it would pick up an additional 1.1 billion shekels from the law, and therefore had a vested interest in pushing it. There is also concern that the Treasury will insert a VAT charge on top of the bag tax, and demanded that a VAT exemption be placed on the bag’s fees.

The Ministry of the Environment reported that revenue from the bags would only be NIS 200 million, as the number of plastic bags the public would buy and use would be significantly reduced.

Another issue Regev raised is that logistically, no one is actually prepared to implement the law.

Representatives from the plastic bag manufacturing industry say the law would be a “death blow” for them, and one suggestion is that all the tax bag revenue go to the environment with some compensation paid to plastic bag manufacturers for damages.

Environment Minister Amir Peretz, who recently quit his ministerial position and was championing the law, told the committee that the retail supermarket chains agreed on a compensation solution for plastic shopping bag manufacturers to allow them to change their production lines.

The Department of Environmental Protection reported to the committee that every family would receive 8 vouchers in the mail along with their electric bill. The vouchers would be traded in for reusable canvas bags. Canvas bags would also be distributed outside supermarkets and convenience stores for those who didn’t receive the vouchers.

Jewish Press News Briefs

Turtle Washed Ashore

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

My friend David Goldberger sent me this image of an sea turtle that was washed ashore Monday on the Netnaya beach, just south of the Carmel Hotel.

Is the water polluted? he wanted to know. Does this pose dangers we are unaware of?

According to Yaniv Levy, manager of the Israeli Sea Turtle Rescue Center at Michmoret, a few miles north of Netanya on the Mediterranean coast, some 2,000 to 3,000 turtles used to nest along Israel’s shores at the turn of the 20th century. Now the numbers are down to about 180 loggerheads and fewer than 20 green turtles, and he estimates that only 10 green females in Israel are capable of egg laying.

According to Levy, the turtles face many dangers: pollution, plastic bags and other litter; outboard motors and fishing nets; jeeps hurtling along beaches. About 50 injured turtles are brought to the Rescue Center every year, most of them victims of human activity.

“We treat injured turtles and return them to the sea, gather and incubate eggs before returning the hatchlings to the beaches, raise public awareness of the issue and help preserve the coastline and establish coastal nature reserves,” Levy says.

(Source: A battle of survival for the Med’s sea turtles)

Yori Yanover

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/photos/turtle-washed-ashore/2013/08/20/

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