Industry News

Ireland to ban single-use plastics such as cups, cutlery and straws


On September 17, 2019, Irish Climate Action Minister Richard Bruton stated that he will propose a series of "thorough actions" to reduce waste and manage resources more effectively.


The "thorough" strategy includes government regulations prohibiting the use of plastic plates, tableware straws, balloon sticks, cotton swab sticks, polystyrene cups, and food containers. It will also prohibit the use of non-recyclable plastics, such as those used for food packaging in supermarkets. This regulation makes some businesses look for alternative products, such as eco paper plate, paper drinking straws, compostable food containers and some other green packaging.


On September 17, 2019, Bruton discussed these new policies with 100 representatives from industry, local authorities, waste collectors, and others.


The government hopes that the new strategy will achieve some goals, including halving food waste, increasing the recycling rate of plastic packaging by 60%, and reducing dependence on landfills by 60%. In addition, environmental taxation, such as the taxation of single-use plastics, is also included on the agenda.


In May 2019, the European Union has proposed a ban on disposable plastic straws and tableware, and has been approved by the European Council. EU member states including Ireland need to incorporate the bill into their national laws within two years.


The amount of garbage produced in Ireland is much higher than the average level in Europe, with an average of over 200 kilograms of garbage packaging per person per year, of which 59 kilograms are plastic.


Bruton said: "We can make the entire environmental protection chain better-70% of food waste can be avoided, half of the materials we use are not properly separated, and two-thirds of the plastics are not included in the recycling list. It’s not clear. We are now deciding how to plan the future course and achieve our new goals."


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