Shoppers help pump £15million into protecting our environment

Date published: 22 August 2019

More than £15million has been pumped into protecting our environment over the last three years thanks to the plastic carrier bag levy, head of the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA) David Small has revealed.

He also welcomed news that shoppers bought 5.3 million fewer carrier bags last year helping to reduce the need for landfill.

“Today’s statistics showing 93.5 million carrier bags were dispensed by retailers under the scheme in 18/19, compared to 300 million bags in 2012, are very encouraging,” NIEA Chief Executive Mr Small explained.

“It clearly reflects the growing concern amongst consumers about environmental issues as well as demonstrating their desire to actively participate in protecting our environment. Reducing and reusing our shopping bags is one simple way for us all to play our part in conserving our natural resources and keep plastic out of landfills,” he added.

Environmental issues benefitting from the carrier bag levy include improving our air quality, increasing waste reduction, protecting sensitive sites and tackling illegal waste. The conservation of vulnerable species and the Live Here, Love Here campaign have also benefitted.

Notes to editors: 

  1. Download the 2018/19 statistical report from the DAERA website.
  2. Download list of funded projects under the 2016-19 Environment Fund from the DAERA website.
  3. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
  4. All media queries should be directed to the DAERA Press Office on 028 9052 4619 or via email. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer on 028 9037 8110.

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