The set of proposals are part of a growing EU drive to rid the environment of plastic waste which has begun showing up in the food chain.
“Plastic waste is undeniably a big issue and Europeans need to act together to tackle this problem,” EU First Vice President Frans Timmermans said.
“Today’s proposals will reduce single-use plastics on our supermarket shelves through a range of measures,” Timmermans added.
The proposals call for banning banning plastic cotton buds, cutlery, plates, straws, drink stirrers and balloon sticks, but it did not set a deadline.
These items must all be made from sustainable materials instead, according to the plan which must be approved by the 28 EU member countries and the European Parliament.
Member states must reduce the use of plastic food containers and drinks cups, by promoting alternatives for sale or ensuring they are not offered free.
Under the plan, producers must contribute to the costs of waste management and will be offered incentives to develop less polluting alternatives.
For example, it calls for producers of plastic fishing gear to cover the cost of waste collection from port reception facilities.
Under the plan, member countries must collect 90 percent of single-use plastic drinks bottles by 2025, through deposit refund schemes, for example.
The plan calls for producers to clearly label products and inform consumers how the waste should be disposed of.
The European Commission, the EU’s executive arm, said businesses will benefit from one set of rules for an EU market of around 500 million people.
It said it will encourage EU companies to develop economies of scale and become more competitive in the “booming” global market for sustainable products.
The proposals, plus one in January for all plastic packaging in Europe to be recyclable by 2030, follows China’s decision to ban imports of foreign waste products for recycling.
The EU currently exports half of its collected and sorted plastics, 85 percent of which goes to China. DM
Watch Pauli van Wyk’s Cat Play The Piano Here!
No, not really. But now that we have your attention, we wanted to tell you a little bit about what happened at SARS.
Tom Moyane and his cronies bequeathed South Africa with a R48-billion tax shortfall, as of February 2018. It's the only thing that grew under Moyane's tenure... the year before, the hole had been R30.7-billion. And to fund those shortfalls, you know who has to cough up? You - the South African taxpayer.
It was the sterling work of a team of investigative journalists, Scorpio’s Pauli van Wyk and Marianne Thamm along with our great friends at amaBhungane, that caused the SARS capturers to be finally flushed out of the system. Moyane, Makwakwa… the lot of them... gone.
But our job is not yet done. We need more readers to become Maverick Insiders, the friends who will help ensure that many more investigations will come. Contributions go directly towards growing our editorial team and ensuring that Daily Maverick and Scorpio have a sustainable future. We can’t rely on advertising and don't want to restrict access to only those who can afford a paywall subscription. Membership is about more than just contributing financially – it is about how we Defend Truth, together.
So, if you feel so inclined, and would like a way to support the cause, please join our community of Maverick Insiders.... you could view it as the opposite of a sin tax. And if you are already Maverick Insider, tell your mother, call a friend, whisper to your loved one, shout at your boss, write to a stranger, announce it on your social network. The battle for the future of South Africa is on, and you can be part of it.
King Tutankhamun's ceremonial dagger is forged from meteorites.