Politics & Legislation Waste Management

Theresa May at War with Plastics

Theresa May, UK's Prime Minister, wants to ban single use plastic products to reduce ocean pollution and the plastic waste problem. Products such as cotton buds and plastic straws could be banned in the UK as from next year.

She said that plastic waste was “one of the greatest environmental challenges facing the world“ and ” Protecting the marine environment is central to our agenda at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.” Theresa May urged 52 other leaders at the Commonwealth Heads of Government summit in London – whose countries span six continents – to do the same.

As an example of the huge impact of plastics on the environment: there’s probably around 150 million tons of plastics in the oceans and 8.5bn plastic straws are thrown away each year.

Theresa May may have been inspired by the Scottish government that announced a consultation on plans to ban the manufacture and sale of plastic cotton buds in January in 2018.

The UK Treasury is also looking at a levy on disposable coffee cups and a deposit return scheme on plastic bottles.

Theresa May’s intent may be genuine and finds its roots in changing customer behaviour and trends towards plastic packaging and waste.

But then again it may be a PR operation to get some steam off and distract from other hot topics such as Brexit and Syria …

There’s a an old saying: when the public is tired of the clown, bring in a couple of circus monkeys for distraction.