Every week, over 1.3 million single-use plastic (SUP) cups and 3 million SUP food containers are thrown away in Northern Ireland, the majority of which will end up in landfill or in our seas.
The shocking statistics highlight why Environment Minister Edwin Poots MLA is once again calling on the public to respond to the Single-Use Plastic drinks and food packaging consultation, ending this week on 14 January.
The Minister said: “Each year, we throw away 70 million SUP drinks cups and 150 million SUP food containers – that’s over 220 million items ending up mostly in landfill or in our oceans. These items can take decades to biodegrade at best, and at worst, some can take centuries. We must take action to stop this pollution and to find better alternatives that our good for our environment.
“In October, I launched the Consultation for the Reduction of Single-Use Plastic Beverage Cups and Food Containers and I extended it for a further four weeks until 14 January to ensure we could get feedback and opinions from as many people as possible. There is growing concern about the devastating impact of this plastic pollution in the long term and its impacts upon climate change and plastic pollution, in particular into the marine environment. I want you to join our fight against this surge of pollution.”
He added: “There’s still time to respond to the proposals, so I would encourage everyone who cares about our environment and plastic pollution to take few minutes this week and get your response in. You can respond at: https://www.daera-ni.gov.uk/consultations/consultation-reduction-single-use-plastic-beverage-cups-and-food-containers.”
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