Government to consider future of single-use plastics
Plastic plates, cups and cutlery could be banned in England as the government launches a consultation on eliminating single-use plastics.
Plastic waste is a huge source of pollution and around 4.25 billion items of single-use cutlery and 1.1 billion plates are used each year. Most of these are plastic and only 10% are recycled when they are disposed of.
The consultation will last 12 weeks and it will also examine the use of wet wipes, plastic sachets and tobacco filters.
Options to be considered include a complete ban on plastic in these items and mandatory labelling that helps consumers dispose of their waste correctly.
The environment secretary, George Eustice, said: “There is growing recognition of the damage that plastics cause to our environment and marine life in particular. We want to reduce the use of plastics in packaging and ban its use in items linked to littering.
“We have already banned plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds and now plan to extend the ban to cutlery and balloon sticks where alternative materials like wood can be used.”
Scotland has previously announced a ban on plastic cutlery, drink stirrers and polystyrene food containers that will come into force in June 2022.
“There is growing recognition of the damage that plastics cause to our environment and marine life in particular.” George Eustice, Enivronment Secretary
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