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European Parliament votes to ban single-use plastics in bid to tackle pollution

European Parliament votes to ban single-use plastics in bid to tackle pollution

The European Parliament has voted for an extensive ban on single-use plastics, CNN reported. Starting from 2012, all products including plastic plates, cutlery, straws and cotton buds will all be eradicated to avoid the worsening of the ecology situation, especially the marine ecosystem.

The European Parliament’s ban is intended to affect items for which valid alternatives are available, which are estimated to make up over 70 per cent of marine litter. This week, Theresa May’s government announced plans to ban single-use plastic products to “turn the tide on plastic pollution”. According to the EU lawmakers,  such a ban will make companies more accountable for their plastic waste.

So far, the EU members would also be obliged to recycle 90 per cent of plastic bottles by 2025, and producers would have to help cover the costs of waste management. Earlier, the eco-activists have criticised companies like Coca Cola, Pepsi and Nestle, which collectively are responsible for a vast proportion of plastic waste, for not doing enough to tackle pollution.

EU sets the new anti-plastic rules

The new rules and regulations will now have to be approved in talks with all EU states, and not all of them are happy or ready for the changes. Plastic products manufacturing is one of the prominent business in every country, that is why some of EU states are likely to push back against the strict new anti-plastic rules.

According to the recent researches, the fragments of plastic have been found everywhere from Arctic sea ice to fertilisers being applied to farmland. The marine ecologists warn that plankton and as large as whales are known to eat plastic, and as tiny shards enter the human food chain they seem to be ending up inside humans as well.

“We have adopted the most ambitious legislation against single-use plastics. It is up to us now to stay the course in the upcoming negotiations with the council, due to start as early as November,” said Belgian liberal Frederique Ries, who was responsible for the anti-plastic bill.