England to follow Wales with proposals to ban single-use plates, cutlery, straws and cups
England is to follow Wales and move to ban single-use plastics such as plates, cutlery, straws and cups.
The Welsh Government announced last year that they would move ahead with proposals to ban single-use plastics, with the prohibition coming into use this year.
Now the UK Government’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has said it will begin a public consultation in the autumn on proposals to ban single-use plastic.
Defra said that single-use plastics used for a few minutes “can last for centuries in landfill or as litter in the countryside or ocean. Around the world, more than one million birds and over 100,000 sea mammals and turtles die every year from eating or getting tangled in plastic waste.”
George Eustice, the environment secretary, added: “It is right that we put in place measures that will tackle the plastic strewn across our parks and green spaces and washed up on beaches. These plans will help us stamp out the unnecessary use of plastics that wreak havoc with our natural environment.”
The government in England has not yet set a firm date for the banning of the plastic products.
The Welsh Government announced in March of last year that they would be moving to ban single-use, hard to recycle and commonly littered plastics.
The single use plastics and other productes they want to ban include:
- cotton buds
- balloon sticks
- plates & cutlery, and
- food and drinks containers made of expanded polystyrene
- products made from oxo-degradable plastic; such as certain types of carrier bags
Then Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government, Hannah Blythyn said at the time that the plastics were “often found on the beaches and seas around our coast, blighting our beautiful country and harming our natural and marine environments”.
“It is vital we don’t throw away our future – which is why we believe taking this direct action will have a significant impact on changing people’s behaviour and make them think about their waste when ‘on-the-go’,” she said.
“The measures I am announcing today are part of a range of potential solutions to the plastic problem. I am committed to working with stakeholders to understand the impact of this proposal, particularly on any citizens who may be reliant on some of the items we have included, to make sure we get it right.
“We’ll be launching a consultation on the proposals soon, and I want to encourage the people of Wales to share their views with us.”
The Scottish Government has also previously announced proposals to ban single-use plastics.