On January 8, the Parañaque city government announced that it would ban single-use plastics in all commercial establishments in the city by June 2020. The ban covers plastic bags, plastic straws, plastic utensils, and other plastic disposables such as cups, stirrers, bowls, and serving trays. Also included in the ban are similar single-use styrofoam products.
Parañaque is just the latest city in Metro Manila to impose the ban on single-use plastics and styrofoam, which is a major development in the campaign against solid waste pollution, as it is one of the four Metro Manila cities that border Manila Bay, along with Las Piñas, Pasay, and Manila. Of the four, only Manila has yet to issue a ban on single-use plastics.
Aside from Parañaque, other cities in the National Capital Region that have banned or at least restricted the use of single-use plastics are Las Piñas, Pasay, Pasig, Makati, Muntinlupa, and Quezon City. Muntinlupa's plastic ban is particularly significant also because its entire eastern border runs along the edge of Laguna de Bay, the country's largest lake.
These seven cities have a combined population of around 6.5 million residents, or around half the population of Metro Manila. The 2015 census pegged Metro Manila's population at 12,877,253.
Other plastic-free places in the Philippines
Outside Metro Manila, there are other local governments that are leading the campaign against plastic pollution by banning or partially restricting single-use plastics. These places include Bacolod City, Baguio, Boracay, and El Nido in Palawan. Public markets in San Fernando, La Union have also banned single-use plastics, while the provincial government in Negros Occidental issued the same ban in all government offices in the province. Meanwhile, 11 towns in Pangasinan have also partially banned the use of plastic bags on dry goods.