On October 25, 2007 the City Council in Łódź adopted a resolution under which each shop owner (regardless of the area of the shop) will be charged a fine if they add to the purchased goods free of charge plastic bags thinner than 0.1 mm.
The resolution is – undoubtedly against the intention of its authors – entirely absurd from the environmental perspective. It introduces a prohibition to use plastic bags which are recycled (and manufactured out of products already used), and the manufacturing of which is far less costly and energy-consuming than the manufacturing of paper bags. Demagogy and haste prevailed over common sense and environmentally friendly actions, which raises our strong objection.
Polish Plastics Converters Association is a firm supporter of rationalising environment-related actions and the advocate of solutions which will contribute to decreasing the amount of waste produced per capita. Reasonable restrictions (obviously introduced in accordance with the law) concerning e.g. the giving by shop assistants of all types of packaging, regardless of the type of material of the packaging, would serve this purpose. A customer would be then obliged to carry his or her own bag to the shop, which would be an actual environmentally friendly action.
We will disseminate reliable knowledge in this respect. We support broad educational and informative actions, and we object to regulations which are in conflict with the law and in the opposition to common sense. The Association will actively back all initiatives leading to the cancellation of those harmful provisions and, if necessary, it will take attempts to participate in administrative and court proceedings.
In addition to the objectionable content of the adopted resolution, the resolution itself is also in conflict with the law, and as such it should be immediately rescinded. In its opinion of October 29, 2007 DZP Law Firm clearly states that: “The resolution does not meet the necessary prerequisites set out in Art. 40 Clause 3 of the Act on Communal Self-Government stipulating that the enforcement regulations may be passed only to the extent not otherwise provided for in separate acts or other commonly applicable regulations. The municipal council may pass enforcement regulations only if such is necessary for the protection of human life or health and to assure public order, peace and security. Thus, it must be concluded that the Resolution breaches the said Art. 40 Clause 30 of the Act on Communal Self-government.
Further, the resolution is not consistent with the statutory powers set out in Art. 40 Clause 3 of the Act on Communal Self-government and breaches Art. 94 of the Constitution. As such, either the province governor or the administrative court should hold that the resolution is null and void (as it breaches the law).”
For more information please contact:
Jan Polaczek –Vice-President of the Polish Plastics Converters Association;
Cell phone. +48604159102
Katarzyna Klaga-Jabłońska – Deputy Director of the Association Office;
Cell phone. +48603626656