Mixed reactions to Welsh bag charge plan

Reporter:

Helen Davies

PLANS for a levy on single-use bags in Wales have divided shoppers, a Leader poll reveals.

Last week we reported that a 7p charge for bags could come into force next spring.

Since then more than 100 people voted in our online poll, with nearly two-thirds saying they would not support the charge.

Put forward by the Welsh Assembly Government, the measure is intended to reduce the number of carriers being used.

A WAG spokesman said any bag given out for single use would be subject to the charge, including paper bags.

Exemptions would include bags used to carry raw meat from butchers and those used in pharmacies for medication.

The proposal has drawn a lively response from Leader readers.

Leaderlive user ‘wrexhamafc’ agreed people should return to using re-usable bags.

He added: “A more useful legislation would be to force companies to use degradable packaging, and much less of it, or have everything sold in recyclable glass or tins.”

‘Yachydda’ wrote: “I have voted yes, but won’t be paying a penny because I use hessian bags.”

‘A Cahill’ suggested the charge would encourage people to use their own bags when food shopping, but wrote: “7p per bag is not significant if you are spending £40-£50 on an impulse clothes shop.”

If the levy does go ahead, ‘cymru1968’ thinks shoppers will get used to the fee, as they have in Canada despite an initial “big fuss” about charging.

One reader suggested carrier bags should be banned altogether. ‘Tommy’ wrote: “Plastic bags are a disgrace and the simple answer to the problem is have a ban date right across the board.”

But ‘Hen ddraig’ branded the proposal a “useless idea” and says its only benefit “will be a few new jobs in local authorities for trading standards officers to administer the scheme”.

A second consultation on the levy was launched by the Welsh Environment Minister Jane Davidson last week and closes on August 2.

What do you think? Have your say below.

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