The European Union Will Ban Single-use Plastics
2019-04-25 13:51 Thursday
Last week, the European Parliament voted overwhelmingly to ban the most common single-use plastic products, including plastic cutlery, straws, mixers and balloon sticks, by 2021.
European lawmakers in Strasbourg, who first voiced support for the ban in December, approved the commission's final proposal by 560 votes last week. Only 35 MEPs voted against the measures.
The new rules mean that from 2021 the EU will ban single-use plastic cutlery, cotton swabs, straws, balloon sticks and stirrers across the board. EU member states also face a target of recycling 90% of plastic bottles by 2029.
From 2025, PET bottles sold in the EU must contain at least 25% recycled plastic, and by 2030 the proportion will rise to 30%.
The ban needs to be approved by the Council of Ministers before it enters EU law later this year. Member states will have two years to translate the legislation into domestic law.
In the European Union, only a quarter of the plastic waste produced each year is recycled, and more than 80% of marine waste is plastic. In response to public concerns about marine plastics, many companies have pledged to voluntarily limit the use of single-use plastics.
The ban must also be consistent with continued government investment in recycling infrastructure, EuroCommerce said. EuroCommerce is an EU-wide industry group whose members include IKEA, M&S, Lidl, Carrefour, Amazon and Tesco.
"As an industry, we have been in the aspect of reducing plastic contribute positively, but to do this effectively, we need to continue the implementation and we need the entire supply chain and the government to really reduce the amount of disposable plastic and marine waste," Christian Verschueren, Head of the EuroCommerce, said. "Without proper waste management infrastructure and adequate recycling facilities, we will not be able to achieve a circular economy."
In addition, Lucozade Ribena Sunstory (LRS), the beverage brand behind Ribena and Lucozade, has announced plans to redesign its Ribena bottles to make them easier to recycle. LRS has pledged to make all its packaging fully recyclable in the current UK recycling system and is therefore changing the design of its bottles to make them more transparent.