This week, Egyptian MP Anissa Hassouna proposed a bill to ban the use of plastic bags and replace them with eco-friendly materials. According to Ahram Gate, Hassouna stated that Egypt annually consumes 12 billion plastic bags, which costs the country around EGP 12 billion. The MP has explained that this does not just harm the environment, but also the Egyptian economy.

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Single-use plastics have a terribly harmful impact on the environment as they’re non-biodegradable and can take up to 1,000 years to decompose. This threatens marine life and puts many lives in danger as plastic waste eventually ends up dumped in the oceans.

Also, if plastic is burned, this results in serious air pollution. The combustion of plastic releases toxic chemicals in the atmosphere, harming any being that inhales them and damaging respiratory systems. 

Egypt has become more environmentally conscious lately, with many grassroots movements rising. Even brands are becoming more socially responsible; for instance, Seoudi Supermarkets recently collaborated with product design start-up, Drumstick, and released tote bags in their Maadi branches. Nevertheless, it’s great to see some initiative coming from the government itself. If such a law is put into action, it will be the beginning of real change.

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By Nadine Arab