Galway County, Ireland Plastic Shopping Levy
Status: Adopted on 3/4/02
WHY WAS THE LEVY INTRODUCED?
The Plastic Bag Levy was introduced on the 4th March 2002 in order to reduce the huge number of plastic shopping bags that were being used everyday. We can all remember the days of plastic bags being handed out indiscriminately at shop counters, many of them ending up littering our streets, countryside, or our coastline. The plastic bag levy is designed to encourage people NOT to use plastic bags, and so eliminate many of the environmental problems caused by their use.
ARE ALL PLASTIC BAGS LIABLE TO THE LEVY?
No. The following are the bags on which no Levy is charged:
- Small bags used to contain fresh meat, fish or poultry, EVEN IF THEY ALREADY HAVE PACKAGING.
- Small bags used to contain loose fruit, nuts, sweets, vegetables, hot or cold cooked food, PROVIDED THESE ITEMS ARE NOT ALREADY PACKAGED.
- Bags given out in Duty – Free areas.
- Re-usable bags which are sold for 70 cent or more.
WHO PAYS THE LEVY?
Customers who want a plastic shopping bag must pay the Levy. To avoid paying the Levy, simply use re-usable bags.
WHAT HAPPENS TO THE MONEY COLLECTED?
The money collected is paid into The Environment Fund and used to fund Litter, Waste Management and other Environmental Projects. This money cannot be used for any other purpose. This means that the Levy paid by those who use plastic bags, is used for the positive improvement of the Environment.
WHAT MUST THE PUBLIC DO?
In order for this Levy to work, members of the public must
- Avoid using plastic shopping bags.
- Report any incidents where Plastic Shopping Bags are distributed free of charge to:
- The Environment Section, Galway County Council.