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Interesting fact
28 Mar  2019 2562

The European Parliament votes for single-use plastics to be banned

Single-use plastic items such as straws, forks and knives as well as cotton buds will be banned in the European Union by 2021 following.  According to Reuters, the European Parliament voted in favor of new measures to fight pollution by 560 to 35.

Out-of-bounds single-use plastics includes plates, balloon sticks, food and beverage containers made of expanded polystyrene and all products made of oxo-degradable plastic. These are the 10 most found items on EU beaches.

Growing concerns about plastic pollution in oceans and stories of dead whales with plastic in their stomachs, together with China’s decision to stop processing waste have prompted the EU to take more drastic steps to tackle the issue.

Marine litter has come under the spotlight because 85 percent of it is plastic.

EU lawmakers allow countries to choose their own methods of reducing the use of other single-use plastics, which is still allowed - such as takeout containers and cups for beverages. They will also have to collect and recycle at least 90 percent of beverage bottles by 2029.

Tobacco companies will be required to cover the costs for public collection of cigarette stubs, which are the second most littered single-use plastic item.

 Meanwhile, the EU recycles only a quarter of the 25 million tonnes of plastics waste it produces per year.  

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