Plastic bags policy to protect the environment

Developing policy for restricting plastic bag use

The Queensland Government had committed to investigating restrictions on single-use plastic bags. Banning bags had long been advocated by environment groups, to reduce litter and protect wildlife. Four states had bans in place, but previous Queensland efforts were abortive.

Losee Consulting collaborated with the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (EHP) team to engage peak stakeholders across environment groups, academia and business. Scott briefed the minister, produced a discussion paper, facilitated the stakeholder forum, convened bilateral meetings, analysed consultation results and drafted a public information paper.

Scott’s involvement allowed EHP to work more at arm’s-length, encouraging stakeholders to contribute their perspectives. By outsourcing part of the policy activity, EHP was able to continue momentum on the issue despite competing policy demands. This work was pivotal for the government to demonstrate industry consultation and now Queensland has now successfully introduced a ban on the supply of lightweight plastic shopping bags.