This autumn, the Government will consult on banning a range of polluting products in a bid to tackle plastic waste in the UK.
Single-use plastic plates, cutlery and polystyrene cups are among items that could be banned in England as part of the new public consultation. It is hoped that such proposals will lead to industry using more sustainable alternatives and prevent plastic litter pollution.
DEFRA reported that businesses are already taking action to tackle plastic waste, such as through the UK Plastics Pact, a collaboration between businesses from across the entire plastics value chain, supported by the government and coordinated by the Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP).
There have also been a range of major steps by the UK government to tackle plastic pollution, including the banning of microbeads in rinse-off personal care products, reducing the use of plastic bags and restricting the supply of single-use plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds. The new plans will build on the success of those measures and form part of the Government’s commitment to prevent all avoidable plastic waste by the end of 2042.
Environment Secretary George Eustice said: “We’ve all seen the damage that plastic does to our environment. It is right that we put in place measures that will tackle the plastic carelessly strewn across our parks and green spaces and washed up on beaches. We have made progress to turn the tide on plastic, banning the supply of plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds, while our carrier bag charge has cut sales by 95% in the main supermarkets.
“Now we are looking to go a step further as we build back greener. These plans will help us stamp out the unnecessary use of plastics that wreak havoc with our natural environment.”
Further details of the consultation, including the full list of single-use items under review, will be announced in the upcoming weeks.