A plan to ban single-use plastic products such as disposable plates and straws has been agreed. EU member states and the EU parliament still have to give the provisional agreement the go-ahead.

European lawmakers have reached an agreement on a ban of single-use plastic products, the Austrian presidency said in Brussels on Wednesday. The move is aimed at making the EU a world leader in using sustainable alternatives that avoid marine pollution.

What does the plan involve?

  • There will be a plastic ban on products where alternatives are readily available and affordable, including plastic cotton swabs, cutlery, plates, straws, drink stirrers and sticks for balloons.
  • Member states will have to implement measure to reduce the use of plastic food containers and drink cups.
  • Producers will be made to help cover the costs of waste management and cleanup.
  • Member states will have to collect 90 percent of single use plastic drink bottles by 2025.
  • Certain products, such as sanitary towels, wet wipes and balloons, will have to have clear labelling which indicates how they should be disposed of.
  • Member states will be required to raise the awareness of consumers about the negative impact of littering as well as the re-use and waste management options available. Click here to read more

Plastic Bottles – Iceland’s successful trial of Deposit Return Scheme – Reverse vending machine

Business Green:  An Iceland trial to collect plastic bottles via in-store vending machines has proved a hit with consumers according to the retailer, which revealed it has collected more than 310,000 plastic bottles for recycling in just six months.

The scheme, which uses ‘reverse vending machines’ in store to collect used bottles, was the first of its kind in the UK when it launched last May. It was designed to collect data on consumer behaviour towards return and recycling schemes in a bid to help government officials draw up plans for a nationwide Deposit Return Scheme (DRS). According to Iceland, the handful of stores across the UK which housed the reverse vending machines have collected a total of 311,500 plastic drinks bottles since May, with an average of 2,583 bottles being handed over every day in November. Customers received 10p for every Iceland plastic bottle returned via the scheme.

Customer feedback collected during the trial suggests the financial rewards, alongside the reassurance bottles would be sent for recycling, were key motivators for people using the machine.

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Iceland vending machine to collect bottles & EU agrees steps to slash single use plastics https://www.mcsuk.org/news/plastics_EU_deal

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