With European Parliament vote looming, official urges bag restriction

Anthony Clark
PRW

Published: April 16, 2014 9:56 am ET
Updated: April 16, 2014 10:00 am ET

Related to this story

Topics Public Policy, Sustainability, Europe, Packaging, Film & Sheet

Janez Potocnik, Europe’s commissioner for the environment, told the European Parliament April 15 that plastic shopping bags are a “highly visible environmental problem” and that their over-consumption and littering need to be addressed.

“Plastic carrier bags easily escape waste management schemes and accumulate in our environment, especially in the form of marine litter. For example, plastic bags accounted for 73 percent [of waste] along the Tuscany coast,” he told members of the European Parliament.

He said that the “huge and growing consumption rates of plastic bags – one hundred billion plastic bags are used in the European Union alone – also demonstrates a squandering of resources”. Plastic bags are a symbol of our throw-away society and unsustainable lifestyles, Potocnik added.

“We use them for a few minutes but their legacy last for hundreds of years.”

The European Parliament is to vote April 17 on a proposal calling for member states to reduce the use of shopping bags by 50 percent by 2017 and 80 percent by 2019.

Public opinion is strongly behind limiting their use but public behavior needs “a nudge”, Potocnik said. This is the clear lesson from member states, such as Ireland, which have shown that simple measures lead to big changes.

“The time has come for member states to take action across the European Union, building on the successful initiatives already in place.”   

This is why environment ministers have called on the Commission to make plans and it is why in November last year it tabled a proposal, Potocnik explained. “It contains two main elements – first, it requires member states to adopt measure to reduce the consumption of lightweight plastic carrier bags. And second, the proposal provides member states with a range of instruments, such as charges.

“The parliament’s draft proposals clearly show that we share the same objective – limiting the consumption and littering of plastic carrier bags.”


Comments

With European Parliament vote looming, official urges bag restriction

Anthony Clark
PRW

Published: April 16, 2014 9:56 am ET
Updated: April 16, 2014 10:00 am ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Simple lightweighting in packaging, caps not so simple anymore

October 22, 2014 4:16 pm ET

The days of finding simple ways to remove additional weight — and costs — from plastic bottles are over, according to one expert.    More

Image

Unilever uses foaming in new bottle

October 22, 2014 1:35 pm ET

Foaming is a good alternative to thin-walling for reducing plastic use in consumer goods packaging, according to a Unilever plastics expert.    More

Image

Bioplastics, design join forces for SOMA

October 21, 2014 11:33 am ET

A polylactic acid made by Germany's Fraunhofer UMSICHT is a key part of the Soma home water filtration system, which its developers call the...    More

Image

Comar merging with Convergence Packaging

October 21, 2014 5:07 pm ET

A couple of plastic packaging companies owned by private investment firm Graham Partners are merging into a single entity.    More

Image

Report: SVP takes Klöckner Pentaplast off the market

October 21, 2014 4:19 pm ET

Plastic sheet leader Klöckner Pentaplast Group is no longer for sale, according to an Oct. 21 Reuters article.    More

Market Reports

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Plastics in Mexico - State of the Industry Report

This report analyzes the $20 million dollar plastics industry in Mexico including sales of machinery & equipment, resins and finished products.

Our analysts provide insight on business trends, foreign investment, top end markets and plastics processing activity. The report also provides important data on exports, production, employment and value of plastics products manufactured.

Learn more

Plastics Caps & Closures Market Report

The annual recap of top trends and future outlook for the plastics caps & closures market features interviews with industry thought leaders and Bill Wood’s economic forecast of trends in growing end markets. You will also gain insight on trends in caps design, materials, machinery, molds & tooling and reviews of mergers & acquisitions.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

More Events