MINISTRY OF WATER DEVELOPMENT, SANITATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
LUSAKA, 3rd December 2018 – ISSUANCE OF STATUTORY INSTRUMENT NO. 65 ON EXTENDED PRODUCER RESPONSIBILITY REGULATIONS
The Government of the Republic of Zambia through the Zambia Environmental Management Agency (ZEMA) under the Ministry of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection wishes to inform the nation and the general public that the Environmental Management (Extended Producer Responsibility) Regulations, Statutory Instrument No. 65 of 2018 (EPR Regulations) came into force on 3rd August, 2018.
The Ministry wishes to inform all stakeholders that in accordance with Section 58 of the Environmental Management Act No. 12 of 2011, the Extended Producer Responsibility Regulations extends the responsibility of the producer of a product or class of products to the post-consumer stage of the product or class of products.
Extended Producer Responsibility Regulations is one of the tools that the Government will rely on to manage, in an environmentally sound manner, packaging materials such as plastics and their resultant waste. The EPR Regulations will also regulate non-returnable glass and plastic bottles, cartons, beverage cans, waste oils, pesticides or chemical containers, used tyres, electrical and electronic equipment and their resultant waste.
The Regulations require a person or persons whose activities generate waste with potential to pollute the environment to employ measures essential to minimize waste through treatment, reclamation, re-use, recovery or recycling.
The EPR Regulations makes provisions for the following:
1. Registration of specified packaging material;
2. Banning of plastics carrier bags and flat bags that are below 30 microns in thickness. This ban applies to manufacturing, trading and commercial distribution of packaging materials. The ban does not apply to plastic carrier bags or plastic flat bags that conform to the National Standard (ZS719) on Plastic Carrier and Flat Bags developed by the Zambia Bureau of Standards;
3. Display of a Notice to customers regarding the ban on the manufacture, trade and commercial distribution of domestically produced and imported plastic carrier and flat bags that do not meet the prescribed standard mentioned above; and
4. Provision of alternative shopping bags to customers. Person(s) providing such bags reserve the right to do so at a fee.
My Ministry wishes to further inform the stakeholders and the general public that ZEMA has been engaging stakeholders from all sectors of the economy on the content, framework and the way Regulations will operate.
Key stakeholders that have so far been consulted include the Zambia Association of Manufacturers Zambia Association of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Oil Marketing Companies, Chain Stores and Shopping Centre Managers, Manufacturers of packaging materials and Recyclers. The process of engagement is ongoing and will cover other sectors such as the electrical and electronic equipment merchants and chemical industry. Once the process of engaging key stakeholders is concluded, the Ministry through ZEMA will proceed to enforce the provisions of the Regulations.
The nation should be informed that ZEMA is charged with the responsibility of ensuring that the Regulations are enforced and as such, Government through my Ministry is confident that enforcement of the Regulations will significantly enhance the responsibility of manufacturers of such products and waste management in order to support Government initiatives such the “Keep Zambia Clean Green and Healthy”.
I wish to appeal to the people of Zambia to join hands with Government of the Republic of Zambia in supporting the effective implementation of these Regulations and indeed other related legislation in order to foster a sustainable management of our environment.
Dr. Bishop Ed. Chomba
Ministry of Water Development, Sanitation and Environmental Protection