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April 06, 2006

Shops put a brake on plastic bags

More than 20 young cyclists rode through the busy streets of Kowloon Wednesday to ask shops to participate in Hong Kong's first No Plastic Bag Day on April 15.

Members of environmental organization Green Student Council were joined by other cyclists for the morning ride from Tsim Sha Tsui's landmark Clock Tower to Mong Kok and back.

Along the way they played a recorded message on a speaker to promote No Plastic Bag Day, and invited shop owners to join.

Shops participating will not offer free plastic bags to customers for the day. Instead, shoppers will have to pay 50 cents for each bag. Proceeds from the event will go to Oxfam Hong Kong.

Green Student Council chairman Angus Ho said the event addressed concern over massive overuse of plastic bags in the city.

Hong Kong consumes 33 million plastic bags - 5 per resident - every day. Australia, with 20 million people, uses a quarter of that number of bags a day, and Ireland, which introduced a bag levy in 2002, uses a third.

Link: The Standard - China's Business Newspaper.

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