Thursday, 19 November 2020

Sale of Single-Use Plastic Products Banned in Croatia from July 1, 2021

November 19, 2020 - The sale of single-use plastic products banned in Croatia next summer - a look at what that means from July 1, 2021. 

Vecernji List reports that the sale of disposable plastic products such as light plastic bags, q-tips, cutlery, plates, straws, and beverage mixing sticks will be banned in Croatia from July 1, 2021. This is determined by the new Law on Waste Management, the proposal of which was prepared by the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development following EU directives.

Under EU directives, Member States have an obligation to ban the sale of single-use plastic products until July 3, 2021, and Croatia has decided to do so on the first day of July next year. This will ban the sale of oxo-degradable plastic products, balloon-attached sticks, and plastic food containers made of expanded polystyrene, such as boxes with or without lids used to hold food intended for immediate consumption that doesn't require any further preparation such as baking, cooking, or heating.

From July next year, containers and beverage cups made of expanded polystyrene, including stoppers and lids, will also be banned. One of the most important innovations, which many will feel when shopping is the ban on light plastic bags. These are carrying bags with a thickness of more than 15 and less than 50 micrometers. Directive (EU) 2019/904 of the European Parliament and the Council on reducing the environmental impact of certain plastic products with measures for disposable plastic products, which include a ban on selling them, was adopted last year.

EU directives set new, higher goals for waste separation and recycling by 2035, which were also implemented in the new Croatian Law on Waste Management, which is now being adopted. Thus, at least 55 percent of the mass of municipal waste must be recovered by recycling and preparation for reuse by 2025, while that percentage is 60 percent by 2030 and 65 percent by 2035. Also, the amount of municipal waste disposed of in landfills must not exceed 10 percent of the total municipal waste mass produced by 2035. And according to the latest preliminary calculation of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development for the municipal waste separation rate in Croatia, in 2019, it was about 37 percent, which is an increase of six percent compared to 2018.

As for the disposal of municipal waste in Croatia, more than 60 percent is still disposed of in landfills. The bill stipulates, among other things, that 77 percent of the weight of beverage bottles, including their caps and lids, placed on the market during the year must be collected separately by 2025 to recycle disposable plastic products separately. That percentage by 2029 must be 90 percent. On the other hand, companies and entrepreneurs can be satisfied with the novelty of the law, which abolishes the obligation to appoint a commissioner for waste management and a deputy commissioner for legal entities that employ 50 or more persons. Also, the obligation to obtain a certificate of training in waste management is abolished for these persons. These certificates will no longer be required for directors, i.e., natural persons who manage the public service provider to collect mixed municipal waste.

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Monday, 23 September 2019

Croatia to Ban Disposable Plastic Products in 2020?

Plastic cutlery, plates, straws, beverage mixing sticks, balloon holders, food containers, and styrofoam cups are just some of the products that Croatia will ban in 2020.

With the new Sustainable Waste Management Act by the Ministry of Environmental Protection, which should be adopted in the second quarter of 2020, it will be impossible to place some disposable plastic products on the market, 24 Sata reports. 

The list includes cotton swabs, cutlery, plates, straws, beverage stirrers, balloon holders, food containers, styrofoam cups, and oxo-degradable plastic products that later decompose into invisible microplastics. The product list may also be expanded, depending on the results of the consumption reduction measures for items like plastic bags.

Specifically, on January 1, 2019, the implementation of measures to reduce the consumption of lightweight and very lightweight plastic bags began, and manufacturers and sellers are required to submit information to the Environmental and Energy Efficiency Fund about the quantity of bags placed on the market. In May 2020, we will also have results from the implementation of these measures, which also includes the mandatory payment for plastic bags and educating citizens. The EU's deadline for banning these products is July 3, 2021.

Vecernji List wrote back in 2017 that the estimated annual consumption of carrying bags in the Republic of Croatia is around 8000 tons. According to the European Commission recommendation that the EU Member States use bags that weigh an average 8.5 grams, it follows that the annual consumption of bags in Croatia is about 954,000,000 bags, or 212 bags per capita per year.

According to the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, which opposes such a ban, 8200 workers in 700 companies worked in the plastics and rubber industry last year. Production increased by 50% from 1990 to last year. Two years ago, we exported plastic worth $437 million. Furthermore, the Croatian Chamber of Economy published data that the analysis of the European association PlasticsEurope showed that if the plastic packaging for food was eliminated, the weight of the packaging would quadruple, the energy consumption would increase by 50 percent, there would be 60 percent more waste and twice the greenhouse gas emissions.

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.

Thursday, 11 July 2019

Motovun Film Festival Joins Movement Against Single-use Plastics

The Motovun Film Festival, which runs from July 23 to July 27, is joining the global action ‘Plastic Free July’, aiming to raise awareness of the harms of single-use plastics, their permanent environmental pollution, and the consequences for living organisms, reports HRTurizam on July 11, 2019.

A simple calculation of last year’s Motovun festival brought some interesting results. The plastic cups that were used each day could build a tower higher than the Motovun hill, which stands at an unbelievable 277 meters above sea level!

Thus, with this year's slogan “Don’t throw our cups away“, the Motovun Film Festival will encourage caterers to pick up cups, straws and plastic utensils during the event. Those engaging in action will be labeled 'PLASTIC FREE', and visitors will be invited to support the caterers in action. Single-use plastic cups will be replaced by reusable ones, which visitors will be able to return for money back or keep as a souvenir.


Greenpeace Croatia is a partner of the festival, whose representatives will host a series of workshops and lectures about the ’shackles of plastic’. 

Their representatives will attend a lecture on Thursday, July 25 at 18:30 to speak about the harmful effects of plastic and, in particular, the microbiology on the environment and life in general, the scale of pollution with all future implications, and solutions for the prevention of further pollution, as well as the ways each individual can actively participate in the promotion of rational and environmentally conscious use of plastics. At that time, activist Marko Capek will use his example of how he completely removed plastics from his life, and will also hold a workshop for making harmless deodorants and sunblocks.

Also on Saturday, July 27, at 18:30, Goran Zgrablić, a chef, sommelier and laser physicist, will hold a mini-course for cooking without waste, after which all the participants will prepare a meal together. 

Within two years, a ban on single-use plastics will be incorporated into the laws of the EU countries and the actions that are currently being undertaken as pioneering efforts will become mandatory.

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page