The Environmental Protection (Single-use Plastic Products) (Wales) Act 2023 now come into force making it a criminal offence to supply or offer to supply (including for free) certain single-use plastic products to consumers in Wales.  The purpose of the new law is to reduce the flow of plastic pollution into the environment by prohibiting the supply of certain single-use plastic products.

Climate Change Minister Julie James explained the Act forms part of the Welsh Government’s response to the climate and nature emergencies and ‘builds on momentum created by communities across Wales who have chosen to go plastic free, defy throwaway culture and tackle littering’

As of today, the following items are now banned from being sold across the country:

  • Single-use plastic plates
  • Single-use plastic cutlery
  • Single-use plastic drinks stirrers
  • Cups made of expanded or foamed extruded polystyrene
  • Takeaway food containers made of expanded or foamed extruded polystyrene
  • Single-use plastic balloon sticks
  • Single-use plastic-stemmed cotton buds
  • Single-use plastic drinking straws (exemptions for those who need them to eat and drink safely and independently)

Public support for the ban has been positive with more than 87 per cent of people backing the move. Minister for Climate Change, Julie James said “This is the first step in phasing out the need for unnecessary single-use plastic being used and sold in Wales”.

To read the Welsh Government press release click here.The Environment Protection (Single-use Plastic Products) (Wales) Act 2023 is available here

There is also a UK wide ongoing consultation on the proposed bad of the manufacture, supply and sale of wet wipes containing plastic which runs until the 25th November 2023. To submit your views click here.

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