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Kenyans can return used paper bags to three supermarkets

The NEMA enforcement team, working with the police, is inspecting compliance of the ban by manufacturers and retailers. Different county governments will issue rules on individual compliance.

NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 28 – Users holding plastic paper bags at home will have an opportunity to return the bags to select retailers who have initiated a recycling program.

The Director General of the National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) Geoffrey Wahungu says Uchumi, Tuskys and Nakumatt Supermarkets have agreed on a take back scheme.

“Citizens can take back the polythene bags they are holding in their houses to the bins located in these retail chains. Not all paper bags will be amenable to recycling …the really dirty ones don’t make economic sense because it takes some cost to clean them,” Wahungu said during the flag off of NEMA’s enforcement team.

The team, working with the police, is inspecting compliance of the ban by manufacturers and retailers.

Those who are still using plastic paper bags will go off with a warning for just today, said Wahungu, clarifying that the county government will be responsible for ensuring compliance by consumers.

Wahungu has also said a Thika-based recycler will have bins in the three supermarkets to mop up the paper bags.

He says several community organizations are already recycling plastic paper bags to make carrier bags and have expressed interest in the take back scheme.

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