The Queensland Government will ban all stores from providing single-use, lightweight plastic shopping bags across the state from 1 July.

Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch has reminded retailers of the fines they face, which is up to $6,300 per offence, when they break the rule.

Enoch joined National Retail Association (NRA) chief executive Dominique Lamb and the ambassador ban association Mal Meninga to issue the reminder.

The ban applies to single-use lightweight plastic shopping bags less than 35 microns.

Enoch said: “Whether you’re a farmer’s market stall holder, run a local fish and chip shop, a supermarket or a larger chain of shops, the ban applies to you.

“The ban was imposed in Queensland because approximately one billion plastic bags were used in the region per year.”

“I have visited a number of retailers who have already made the switch away from plastic shopping bags and thank them for their early support. Everyone, not only retailers, need to be prepared to make the ban a success.”

According to Enoch, the ban was imposed in Queensland because approximately one billion plastic bags were used in the region per year, out of which, around 16 million ended up polluting the environment.

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Enoch added: “That’s the same weight as 96 small cars. It’s a serious environmental issue and the ban is strongly supported by Queenslanders.”

“It’s important to remember that reusable bags cost more to produce, so most retailers will either be factoring it into their pricing structure or charging a small fee to cover their costs.

“It’s a small change for a big impact and most retailers are really supportive. They can’t wait to play their part in reducing plastic bag pollution.”