Plastic Bags to be Banned by 2021

Single-use plastic products such as cutlery, cotton bud sticks, plates, straws, beverage stirrers, and balloon sticks will be banned from the EU market from 2021. This was said in an official report by the European Parliament.

In the report drafted by Frédérique Ries, and adopted with 51 votes to 10, with 3 abstentions, very lightweight plastic bags, products made of oxo-degradable plastics and fast-food containers made of expanded polystyrene, were added to the list as well.

The use of several other items, for which no alternative exists, will have to be reduced by the member states by 2025. Member states will draft national plans to encourage the use of products suitable for multiple uses, as well as reusing and recycling. MEPs agreed that reduction measures should also cover waste from tobacco products, in particular, cigarette filters containing plastic - by 50% by 2025 and by 80% by 2030.

In addition, at least 50% of lost or abandoned fishing gear containing plastic is collected per year, with a recycling target of at least 15% by 2025.

Frédérique Ries, a rapporteur, said: “Europe can be a key player in finding a solution, leading at a global level, as it has done in the past in the fight against climate change”. The report will be put to a vote by the full House during its 22-25 October plenary session in Strasbourg.

According to the European Commission, more than 80% of marine litter is plastics.

Petya Petrova

Petya Petrova is a journalist, believer, and traveler.

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