There were to 2 texts.
From Blue Planet, to taxes on unrecycled plastic, and a plastic waste export ban, Britain has been a world leader in highlighting and tackling the plastic pollution crisis.
Yet this month (October) the British Standards Institution (BSI) enacted a new specification (PAS9017) which supports plastic materials which require additives to degrade to be sold on the UK market.
These plastics bear remarkable similarities to oxo-degradable plastics which will be banned across the EU from next year.
These materials contain additives that accelerate the conversion of macroplastics into microplastics after months or years of laying in the open.
Increasing evidence is showing microplastics entering our food chain through animals, fruits and vegetables.
The full health implications of this are yet unknown.
This does not solve the global problem of plastic pollution but worsens it and by misusing the term biodegradable, this plastic provides the public with a licence to litter.
Recycling facilities are unable to differentiate between conventional plastics and these doctored alternatives.
This renders recycled plastic useless as it is contaminated with additives designed to degrade it.
This plastic will also find its way into composting and biogas facilities, causing severe financial damage to the sector, and make it harder to produce high quality composts and biofertilisers.
Furthermore, British companies that take up these materials could find they are unable to export their products to the EU once the ban comes into force in 2021.
The UK voted for the EU ban when it was proposed in 2019. Failing to act now could turn Britain from a leader into a laggard in fighting the plastic crisis.
For these reasons, we call on the Government to protect our environment and protect British business by banning these materials immediately.
as you know we have written in the past about the threat oxdegradable plastics are to both plastic and organic recycling, as well as being a persistent pollutant in the environment as they break macroplastics into microplastics.
We still have received no signal from DEFRA that these materials will be banned in England as both the Scottish and Welsh Governments are planning and, as you know, the whole EU has legislated for.
Meanwhile a new PAS has been published which is strikingly similar to an oxodegradable technology and risks the spread of these plastics widely across England messing up plastic recycling, increasing littering, and potentially the amount of non compostable plastics going to biowaste treatment, polluting soil and damaging biodiversity.
Many of us think that this is unacceptable including the BPF and leading environmental groups.
As a result we will publish this letter in main daily newspapers within the month of October and follow up with Parliamentary questions.
If you agree with our concerns, please add your signatures to ours and join the coalition which will pressure DEFRA to adhere to the policies it itself voted for in 2019 when we were in the EU and which it has committed to as part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation New Plastics Economy initiative.
We ask you kindly not to request changes to this letter which is a length and format dictated by the newspapers to ensure publication. I would be grateful if you let me have your reply by October 16th.
In order to “sign” simply say yes, we can add your affiliation to those agreeing.
Some people want me to be part of this anti-OXO campaign apparently. I agree to publish these texts but I strongly disagree with these kind of practices.
It’s counterproductive, unwise and it lacks gentlemanhood.
Some people believe witch-hunting the oxo industry is going to serve the cause of the compostable plastics industry but I think they’re mistaken and up for a big surprise.
The public (opinion) doesn’t understand and recognise the difference between biodegradable and compostable. Stigmatising OXO will lead to stigmatising compostable; you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to understand this equation.
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