This week the European Parliament overwhelmingly voted 560 to 35 in favour of banning single-use plastic items such as straws, polystyrene cups, forks, knives, and cotton buds by 2021. We’ve all been waiting for this legislation and we’re delighted to see such a majority vote on an issue that affects us all. It’s a great step towards sustainability in hospitality. As part of the legislation, tobacco companies will also be required to cover the costs for public collection of cigarette stubs, which are the second most littered single-use plastic item. The directive only has to pass through formalities before it is published in the EU rulebook. Once that happens, EU member states will have two years to implement the directive.
Until now The EU only recycled a quarter of the 25 million tonnes of plastics waste it produces per year. This new law sets a 90% collection target for plastic bottles by 2029 and states that recycled materials should make up 25% of each plastic bottle by 2025.
This legislation stems from the growing concerns about plastic pollution in our oceans which, in total accounts for 85% of marine litter. Evidence regarding the hundreds of thousands of marine animals dying from ingesting plastic each year which was brought to light by ‘The United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization’ has also aided in bringing this legislation to the forefront of the EU’s agenda. Commenting on today’s vote, Sinn Féin MEP Lynn Boylan stated “The bans are great” and they are a “positive first step”.
As sustainability is one of our key values here at EcoBurner, we are delighted to see Europe setting new and ambitious standards for long term sustainability and paving the way for the rest of the world to follow in its footsteps. Check out how we’re taking small steps towards sustainability in hospitality https://ecoburner.com/about/