German Environment Ministry has drafted a bill which would ban single-use plastic bags in 2020



The German Environment Ministry has drafted a bill which would ban single-use plastic bags.

Environment Minister Svenja Schulze announced on Friday that she plans for the bill to become law in 2020. "I believe that we have the support of the people of Germany," she said. "The time is right for a plastic bag ban."

The Social Democrat politican says that businesses that violate the new regulation could face a fine of €100,000 ($110,000).

Should the bill become law, there will be a six-month "transition period" which will be spent "distributing the remaining stock of plastic bags" and using up the "remaining stock." The ban will also include recycled and ecologically produced plastic bags.

Schulze said the goal was to "get out of the throwaway society and that overall, we use less plastic."

An agreement reached with businesses in 2016 has already been successful in reducing plastic bag consumption. At many stores, consumers must now pay for plastic bags.

According the Environment Ministry, there has been a 64% decline in plastic bag use since 2015.