On 17 July the EPA announced the Targets and Measures for Restrictions of Single-Use Lodging Supplies (一次用旅宿用品限制使用對象及實施方式). Lodging providers shall be prohibited from offering liquid toiletry and bodycare products in single-use packaging with a volume of less than 180 milliliters, and shall be required to provide large-bottle wall-mounted shower products instead. The EPA stated that enterprises will be given a buffer period to deplete their inventory and adjust, with inspections commencing from 1 January 2025.
The targets and measures have been formulated by the EPA in accordance with international practices and to align with the trend to reduce plastic waste. These regulations apply to various accommodation enterprises, including tourism hotels, regular hotels, bed-and-breakfast establishments, and lodging enterprises. Under these regulations, liquid toiletries and grooming products such as shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and lotion are required to be provided in large bottles instead of small single-use containers. Personal hygiene items such as combs, toothbrushes, toothpaste, razors, shaving foam, and shower caps are not to be actively displayed. However, ancillary facilities like spas and swimming pools, services, and business facilities outside the guest rooms are not subject to these restrictions concerning personal hygiene items.
The use of small-packaged toiletry products commonly seen in the past had generated a significant amount of waste. The goal is to achieve source reduction and promote environmental protection among travelers by advocating for the use of larger-sized products over smaller ones and encouraging guests to bring their own items. The EPA also noted that even before the policy came into effect, many enterprises had already taken proactive measures, such as offering eco-friendly accommodation options and refraining from automatically providing disposable amenities. In addition, the public is urged to prioritize sustainable tourism and choose eco-friendly lodging establishments of this kind.
Once the restrictions are effective, it is estimated they will reduce use of such products by over 460 million small containers per year, of approximately 2,100 metric tons in weight. This reduction is equivalent to an annual emission reduction of 2,500 metric tons. By replacing small containers with larger ones, the overall plastic usage is expected to decrease by about 30%. The EPA emphasizes once again that there is still a transition period of over one year before the regulation officially takes effect, so enterprises are reminded to promptly adjust their service models and transition gradually.
Excerpt from Major Environmental Policies, July 2023
The EPA stresses that the regulation does not entail a complete ban on toiletry products, but rather seeks to achieve sustainable tourism that meets the needs for both tourism and environmental protection through consumption and services. The reduction of disposable amenities need not compromise the quality of hotel services. Subsequently, the Tourism Bureau under the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) will collaborate to adjust the criteria for the Guidelines Concerning the Star-Rating System for Hotels. The EPA will also work in conjunction with the Tourism Bureau and representatives from relevant hotel industry associations to collectively enhance promotion of sustainable tourism for both domestic and international consumers. This effort is part of a broader initiative to encourage a green lifestyle and contribute to environmental protection.
- Ministry of Environment