3 Mar 2010

American Samoa considers banning plastic bags

3:07 pm on 3 March 2010

The American Samoan Senate has begun review of a bill that would ban plastic shopping bags in the territory.

The House of Representatives approved the bill two years ago and it has been pending in the Senate since.

The Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, Fanutatele Dr. Toafa Vaiaga'e, has testified that plastic bags are harmful to the environment and marine life.

He says member countries of the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme are moving to ban plastic bags as they are not biodegradable.

Samoa banned plastic bags last year.

The Director of Commerce, Faleseu Eliu Paopao, says if the bill is passed and signed into law, American Samoa will be the first state or territory in the United States to ban plastic bags.