Intergovernmental committee discusses legally binding instrument on plastic pollution
During 28 November to 2 December, the EU and its Member States participated in the first Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) meeting which took place in Punta del Este, Uruguay. The aim of the meeting is the development of an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, including the marine environment. For the EU and its Member States it is key that the instrument will address the whole lifecycle of plastics with priority given to the upstream parts, by commitments and provisions that lay the ground for a sustainable production and consumption of plastics, paving the way for a circular plastic economy. The EU and its Member States are optimistic that this committee can deliver and are motivated to work together with other Member States, stakeholders and civil society to progress towards the next session of the INC.
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EU Commission initiated consultation on PPWR
After the European Commission published its proposal for a Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation (PPWR), it also initiated another public consultation. The adopted act is open for feedback for a minimum period of 8 weeks. All feedback received will be summarised and presented to the European Parliament and Council with the aim of feeding into the legislative debate. In order to contribute, users will need to register or login using an existing social media account.
UK government eyes ban on single-use plastic plates and cutlery
Single-use plastic cutlery, plates and other items are set to be banned by the UK government and replaced by biodegradable items. The UK has already banned some single-use plastic items, including straws, stirrers, and cotton buds, but a spokesperson for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs informed that the government was “determined to go further and faster to reduce, reuse, and recycle more of our resources.” The spokesperson said the department held a public consultation into new restrictions on plastic in England and will be addressing the issue soon. A similar ban is in place in Scotland and another one is set to take effect next year in Wales. It was reported that the UK Environment Secretary Thérèse Coffey will announce firm plans in the coming weeks.