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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 12 Hansard (Thursday, 28 October 2010) . . Page.. 5248 ..

course, paper bags. The biodegradable bags are usually made of some form of starch or other compostable material.

The legislation enables retailers to charge for substitute bags. This will be the same as the existing practice, where consumers can purchase reusable “green” bags or paper bags. However, retailers cannot choose to supply banned bags to consumers for a charge.

Mr Speaker, although there is a widespread community support for this ban, the government recognises that it will require a change in behaviour. During the four-month transition period any retailer who still provides single-use plastic bags must also provide alternatives for carrying.

Retailers will also be required to prominently display a sign indicating that beginning on 1 November 2011 the ACT government will ban the supply of lightweight checkout-style plastic shopping bags and that alternative shopping bags are available from the retailer.

The government is committed to working with retailers to raise awareness and bring about participation in this transition period. The bill allows for penalties of a maximum of 50 penalty units for those who do not comply. On the basis of the success of the South Australian Plastic Bag Ban Taskforce in minimising shopper and retailer inconvenience by way of good communications around the intent and the scope of the ban, it is proposed that an ACT plastic bag advisory group will be established with similar terms of reference.

The government will invite retailers, peak retail bodies and local associations from within the ACT to join the plastic bag advisory group to promote a smooth transition. The government will also assist retailers by undertaking a comprehensive communications campaign to help businesses, retail workers and consumers get ready for the ban and the transition arrangements.

The campaign will include advertising, direct mail-outs, training materials, and signage. Whether through addressing climate change, increasing use of renewable energy or reducing waste sent to landfill, time and again Canberrans have shown their willingness to make significant changes in the pursuit of a more sustainable future.

The key to this is the participation of all sectors of the community, from the government to business, community groups and residents. This bill is simply another step in this ongoing process for our city. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Seselja) adjourned to the next sitting.

Prostitution Act 1992

Referral to committee

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Water, Minister for Energy and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.52): I move:

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