Theresa May to call time on avoidable plastics by 2042

Theresa May to call time on avoidable plastics by 2042

Unveiling a new environmental agenda, British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Thursday Britain would eradicate avoidable plastic waste in the next quarter century. Environment Secretary and leading Brexiteer Michael Gove has promised a "Green Brexit" once the United Kingdom leaves the EU.

Mrs May will say today: "We look back in horror at some of the damage done to..." Highlighting the issue of plastics pollution, May said that people in the future would be "shocked at how today we allow so much plastic to be produced needlessly", reported the Guardian. "And promoting innovation amongst producers will be critical to ensuring we eliminate unnecessary single-use items, as well as making sure that they are taking financial responsibility for the impact these products have".

"Today I can confirm that the United Kingdom will demonstrate global leadership".

"We look forward to working with government to help the United Kingdom progress towards a truly circular economy by helping to reduce littering, significantly increasing recycling infrastructure, ensuring all packaging used for food and drink consumed "on the go" is captured for recycling, encouraging design for recyclability and the use of recycled materials in new low carbon products".

Numerous measures due to be included in the speech have either already been formally announced by ministers or were briefed to the media ahead of the speech. Recycling and reusing plastics will be encouraged, and the government will launch a call for evidence in 2018 to see how the tax system might be used to reduce single-use plastic waste.

Avoidable plastic waste is a term used by industry to describe products including plastic bags, straws, coffee stirrers, soda and water bottles and most food packaging. The government will explore whether supermarkets can introduce aisles where there is no plastic packaging and all the food is loose, according to the Guardian.

The speech is part of a concerted effort by the prime minister to appeal to young and green-minded voters and deliver on the government's Green Brexit promise. Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn said 25 years was "far too long" to take action.

"Overall, the plan represents an important first step towards policies that will support the growth of our industry and enable it to play a pivotal role in the development of a more resource efficient, sustainable economy".

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