B1.1.3 Voluntary Measures


A voluntary measure requires an organization or an individual to choose to do it. This is easier said than done as people naturally tend to put economic wealth over environmental wealth.

For a voluntary measure to be effective, the intended participants must be fully aware of the implications of their action. A recent example has been that of plastic bags. Many supermarkets have tried to encourage people to re-use bags, purchasing bags made from Jute or long-lasting plastic bags. It seems that this failed for the most part and some supermarkets have therefore resorted to charging for plastic bags, in an attempt to achieve the goal.

Recycling waste is a voluntary measure in domestic circles, but is a financial measure for commerce and industry. Domestic dwellings pay the same for waste disposal whether they produce a full bin every week or every month and whether they recycle their waste or not. Companies are charged and may be subject to landfill tax, resulting in recycling being an economic decision rather than a voluntary one.