The government has announced that it has received record-breaking support from members of the public to counter the blight of plastic waste. Here’s what they said:

Individuals, businesses and campaign groups have expressed overwhelming support for action on tackling the impact of plastics on our environment.

The backing comes as HM Treasury publishes the summary of responses to its recent call for evidence on how tax can be used to reduce plastic waste. The call attracted an unprecedented 162,000 responses, the highest in the Treasury’s history.

The Chancellor, Philip Hammond, has reiterated the department’s commitment to act through the tax system to reduce the amount of single-use plastic waste. The views received will help inform and shape the government’s approach ahead of this year’s Budget.

Measures which received noteworthy public support and are being considered include using the tax system to:

  • encourage greater use of recycled plastic in manufacturing rather than new plastic,
  • discourage the use of difficult to recycle plastics, like carbon black plastic,
  • reduce demand for single-use plastics like coffee-cups and takeaway boxes,
  • encourage further recycling as opposed to incineration.

 

It will be interesting to see Mr Hammond’s more detailed ideas if and when they become part of the Autumn Budget later this year.

According to Treasury sources, the department is also looking at how it could further support measures to fund the development of new, greener products and innovative processes that will help ensure a more sustainable future for the country.

This work forms part of the government’s overall commitment to eliminate all avoidable plastic waste. It builds on the recently announced £20 million plastics innovation fund – to support the production of sustainable and recyclable plastics – and follows the £61.4 million announced by the Prime Minister to be invested in tackling plastic in the world’s oceans.

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