SEOUL, Feb. 15 (Korea Bizwire) – The environment ministry said Monday it has revised a set of laws to limit the use of plastic and other disposable items as the country grapples with soaring waste amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The revisions, which will be subject to a public review from Tuesday until March 29, include a ban on the use of paper cups, plastic straws and stirrers inside cafes and other eateries.
The use of plastic bags will now be prohibited at retailers and bakeries, expanding a ban that currently applies to large stores and supermarkets occupying a space of at least 3,000 square meters and 165 square meters, respectively.
The revisions also restrict the use of disposable items by food delivery services, hotels with 50 or more rooms and funeral homes fitted with washing facilities.
Starting in 2023, LED lamps will become a must-recycle item that has to be disposed of in designated collection boxes in apartment compounds.
Producers of LED lamps will be required to recycle 109,000 tons, or about 16 percent, of their estimated 2023 output of 693,000 tons.
In 2028, the percentage will be set higher to around 42 percent.
Meanwhile, new packaging regulations will require producers to make easily recyclable wrapping material according to a set thickness, color and weight ratio.
To encourage the use of glass and other substitutes for plastic containers, importers and sellers of plastic goods will be asked to meet a target ratio of plastic use and face a fine of 10 million won (US$9,074) in the event of repeated failures.