In January 2019, the Balearic Autonomous Government passed a law banning single-use plastics, one step ahead of the similar EU Directive.
The law prohibits the following single-use products as of 1.1.2021: Lightweight plastic bags,
Plastic dishes (coated disposable trays, plates, cutlery, drinking cups), Drinking straws,
Disposable razors, Disposable lighters, Cotton swabs, Lollipop sticks, Disposable wipes,
Single-use capsules for coffee, Disposable toners and cartridges

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Implemented in

  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Spain

Sectors of activity
Consumer Goods, Waste, incl. Chemicals, Tourism

Type of initiative
Policy Frameworks & Tools

Start date
04/02/2020

End date
31/12/2030

Shared by

Jorge Esteban

Head of Unit for Development of New Products

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Objectives

Mallorca is the largest of the Spanish Balearic Islands, an archipelago in the Mediterranean Sea. This island is one of the most important tourist destinations in Spain and is one of the most popular holiday destinations in the entire Mediterranean region.
In Mallorca, the amount of municipal waste generated varies with the seasonality of tourism. Mallorca receives more than ten times as many tourists in relation to its population per year. Most visit between May and October. In the high season, the island records more than 80 per cent of all its annual tourist traffic.
Tourists are also the reason for the above-average rate of municipal waste: 580 kg per inhabitant in Mallorca (compared to the Spanish average of 443 kg).56 This figure rises to 700 kg per person for waste production in all of the Balearic Islands, which is the highest in Spain.57 The Balearic Islands produce the highest volumes of waste and have the lowest recycling rate. Tourism has a major impact on the amount of waste generated on the island, be it plastic, paper, glass, organic or mixed waste.
Unlike many other holiday regions in the Mediterranean that share a similar fate, Mallorca is now taking radical action to combat the plastic waste pollution of the Balearic Islands and the sea. The hotel sector is fundamentally affected.

Activities

As collected through the One Planet Reporting

Outcome level

Policy instrument for SCP

  • 2019 Balearic Islands' law for waste and polluted lands

Impact and Results

In January 2019, the Balearic Autonomous Government passed a law banning single-use plastics, one step ahead of the similar EU Directive.

The law “La nueva Ley de residuos y suelos contaminados de Illes Balears (8/2019) prohibits the following single-use products as of 1.1.2021: Lightweight plastic bags, Plastic dishes (coated disposable trays, plates, cutlery, drinking cups), Drinking straws, Disposable razors,
Disposable lighters, Cotton swabs, Lollipop sticks, Disposable wipes, Single-use capsules for coffee, Disposable toners and cartridges.

Drinking water on the island will also be made accessible to everyone in public buildings. From 2021, hotels, cafés and restaurants will also be required to provide guests with free tap water (as long as they have drinking water suitable for consumption).

In addition, plastic disposable pre-portioned packs may no longer be offered in food and sanitary areas in hotels and restaurants. These include, for example, ketchup, mustard, sugar, jam, etc., but also shampoo, creams, lotions, etc. for toiletries.

The aim is to reduce the volume of waste by a total of ten per cent by 2021 and by 20 per cent by 2030 through better waste separation. To this end, “pay as you throw” fees will be introduced for the various waste categories and a bonus system for best practices. Another target is to reduce food waste by 50 per cent by 2030. Anyone who violates the law must expect fines of between EUR 300 and EUR 1.75 million.