Abu Dhabi to ban single-use plastic bags from June


The capital of the United Arab Emirates announced Wednesday it would start banning single-use plastic bags from June, the oil-rich country's latest move to advance its ambitious carbon reduction goals.

The statement from Abu Dhabi's government-run media office did not specify how the upcoming ban would be enforced, whether by fining businesses distributing the ubiquitous thin bags or charging people for their use. The emirate also said it plans to completely get rid of single-use Styrofoam cups, plates and food containers by 2024.

It follows a similar announcement from the neighboring emirate of Dubai that it would start applying a 25-fil (6 cent) charge to plastic bags in July, also with the aim of phasing the disposable bags out in two years.

The UAE, a major oil producer and the host of next year's United Nations climate summit, has declared it aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 — a target that remains difficult to assess.

Plastic bags are known as one of the most problematic kinds of garbage, polluting streets and waterways and harming birds and marine creatures.

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