Climate Action

Draft plastic pollution law backed by MPs

A new draft law to significantly reduce plastic waste and pollution by 2042 was presented to Parliament yesterday.

  • 26 February 2019
  • Rachel Cooper

A new draft law to significantly reduce plastic waste and pollution by 2042 was presented to Parliament yesterday.

The Phase-out of Plastic Pollution Bill, which has been drawn up by Friends of the Earth and the National Federation of Women’s Institutes (NFWI), aims to phase out all bus the most essential uses of plastic by 2025.

The Bill has been supported by a number of MPs, including Alistair Carmichael Liberal Democrat MP. The

Alistair Carmichael, who presented the bill, said: “Our government has got to start taking the threat of plastic in our oceans more seriously. The Bill I have been working on with Friends of the Earth and the WI would put meaningful targets into law. “We have got to get ambitious if we are to reverse the current trend in plastic pollution and to do that we must challenge our throwaway culture.

The Bill also includes an independent advisory Committee on Plastics Pollution (CPP), this will assess plastic use and advise the Secretary of State as to policy measures to achieve the statutory targets.

Craig Bennett, Friends of the Earth chief executive, said: “The only practical way to really end the scourge of plastic pollution in the next 25 years is through legislation. Recent initiatives from government and companies are certainly welcome, but these are just tiny drops in a vast ocean of plastic waste that’s wrecking our environment and harming our wildlife. It's time to get drastic on plastic and take bold action with a timetabled phase-out of all but the most essential plastics."

This follows the UK Government announcing a new plan to transform the waste system by launching a consultation on introducing a world-leading tax on plastic pollution which does not meet a minimum threshold of at least 30 per cent recycled content.