Republished with permission from Pressed News an Evio Community Partner
The European Parliament made a dramatic move yesterday. It approved a sweeping ban on single-use plastics in the U.K. and across all E.U. nations (i.e. Austria, Finland, France, Germany, Greece). Under the new law, items like plastic straws, cotton swabs, disposable plates, and cutlery will be out of use by 2021. E.U. members will have to recycle 90% of their plastic bottles by 2025. It’s a drastic but necessary move to encourage manufacturers and retailers to recycle (or completely stop using plastic) in an effort to reduce ocean pollution.
Why specifically ocean pollution?
Because plastic products make up more than 80% of litter in the ocean. Plastics are being found in the stomachs of sea turtles, whales, and seals after they die. One-time use plastics are the worst polluters. They travel easily in water, absorb toxins, and damage flora and fauna along the way. More than 700,000 plastic bottles are thrown away in the U.K. every day. And those plastic bottles can take up to 450 years to biodegrade.