The DEC will bring back enforcement of its ban on single use plastic carryout bags, starting Oct. 19. The plastic bag ban went into effect on March 1 and was not enforced due to an agreement between the parties in a lawsuit brought by Poly-Pak Industries Inc., et al, in New York State Supreme Court.
DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos had the following to say regarding enforcement the ban:
“The Court’s decision is a victory and a vindication of New York State’s efforts to end the scourge of single-use plastic bags and a direct rebuke to the plastic bag manufacturers who tried to stop the law and DEC’s regulations to implement it. As we have for many months, DEC is encouraging New Yorkers to make the switch to reusable bags whenever and wherever they shop and to use common-sense precautions to keep reusable bags clean. The Court has ruled, and DEC will begin to enforce the ban on October 19th. It’s time to BYOBagNY.”
The DEC has agreed to provide a 30 days’ notice to the parties and the Court prior to commencing enforcement of the ban and is currently conducting extensive outreach to stakeholders such as grocery stores, retailers and more to provide notice and answer questions. The DEC also wishes to encourage residents of New York to bring their own reusable bags out shopping with them, and to use the hashtag #BYOBagNY to promote the usage of reusable bags.
Additional information on exemptions to the ban, as well as FAQ’s posters, flyers, and tips on how to keep reusable bags clean can be found on the DEC website, or by calling 518 402-8706