EU proposes ban on straws and other single-use plastics

EU proposes ban on straws and other single-use plastics

The ban would take in plastic straws, plates, cutlery, cotton buds, drink stirrers and sticks for balloons-as well as single-use drinks containers, unless their caps and lids remain attached. The proposed ban aims to tackle single-use plastics, often found on beaches.

"Assuming a multi-year financial planning of the European Commission, this fee may be 80 cents per kilogram, which will go to the overall European budget", - said Oettinger. According to a press release, the plastic straw ban is part of the city's new Zero Waste 2040 initiative.

The European Commission proposed on Tuesday increased spending of EU money on Italy and other southern member states hit by the economic and migrant crises, while reducing funds for regions in the bloc's former communist eastern countries.

A spokesperson for the European Commission told The Brussels Times that nearly 100 items of single-use plastics is not covered by the proposal, such as diapers and medical items. There are already affordable non-plastic alternatives to these products, meaning that they could be removed from the market, the Commission explained.

In 2014, Timmermans, also responsible for better regulation, opposed the European Parliament on the rules in a directive on plastic bags, called it "overregulation" and thought that there later would be problems with the implementation.


"What this means in practice is that you won't see single-use plastic cotton buds on your supermarket shelves, but ones made with more environmental friendly materials instead", Timmermans told The New York Times.

Member states of the European Union will also have to start actively reducing their use of plastic food containers and drinks cups.

Finally, certain products will need to abide by new labelling rules created to make it clear to consumers how to properly dispose of the items to prevent waste; wet wipes, sanitary towels and balloons all come under this proposal.

Meanwhile, producers of fishing gear - which makes up just over a quarter of all beach litter - would be required to cover the cost of collecting, transporting and recycling that discarded gear. The Commission hopes that raising awareness in the fishing industry will help anglers and trawlers recover their equipment once it reaches the end of its life-cycle. The European Commission on Monday urged the EU's other institutions to "treat this as a priority file, and to deliver tangible results for Europeans before the elections in May 2019".

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