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    What changes on 1 October in Belgium?

    Monday, 30 September 2019
    Credit: Wikipedia/Pixabay

    As the month of October kicks off, some changes come into place in Belgium.

    The introduction of new garbage bags, less short flights for government personnel and a change to the rules on keeping exotic reptiles are just some of the things that will change.

    Less short distance flights

    From October 1, Flemish government personnel will no longer be able to fly for business trips abroad of less than 500 km or for those taking less than 6 hours to complete overland. This decision is part of a series of measures taken relating to the status of Flemish government staff.

    The government is thus following the example of the Flemish parliament in making professional travel abroad greener.

    The measure will apply “unless it can be demonstrated that travelling using another mode of transport means a disproportionate loss of time and resources or else there are good reasons for it to be considered untimely or not practicably achievable,” the government text stated.

    A limited number of reptiles allowed as pets in Flanders

    From 1 October, only 421 types of reptiles can be kept as pets in Flanders, HLN reports.

    The list aims to prevent exotic animals from ending up in at the shelter or abandoned outdoors. Such a list has been available for mammals since 2001.

    The reptiles must be easy to keep, must not pose a major danger to humans and nature and there must be sufficient information available about their care. Anyone who was already in possession of a reptile that is not on the list before 1 October may keep it. 

    Changes to plastic recycling 

    The intercommunal BEP Environnement is introducing the new blue bag in Namur province from 1 October, and the town of Héron (Liège province) is doing the same.

    Yoghurt pots, butter dishes, plastic cheese trays and plastic film can now be recycled in the new PMC sacks. Until now, only plastic bottles, metal containers and drinks cartons were allowed.

    The old bags will remain valid indefinitely. Citizens can, therefore, continue to use them, adding the plastic packaging authorised from 1 October. Costs remain unchanged.

    The modified sorting will lead to a decrease in residual waste of 6 to 8kg a year for each inhabitant.

    Jules Johnston
    The Brussels Times