News By/Courtesy: Riya Singh | 30 Jun 2020 13:19pm IST

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Germany bans plastic
  • The prohibition will come into effect from July 2021.
  • Polystyrene pollution

The German Cabinet agreed after months of speculation and the ban will mean the country falls in line with an EU directive to reduce waste. The prohibition will come into effect from July 2021.

BERLIN -- Germany is banning the sale of single-use plastic straws, cotton buds, food containers, bringing it in line with a European Union directive intended to reduce the amount of plastic garbage that pollutes the environment.

The German executive body voted to ban many single-use plastic products as part of its effort to reduce plastic pollution.

The Federal Cabinet's Wednesday decision aligns Germany with goals put in place by the European Union to have each member-state cut back on plastic usage. The vote bans plastic straws, plastic food containers, single-use cutlery, plastic stirring sticks, and polystyrene cups and boxes. The ban does not take effect until July 3, 2021.

Environment Minister Svenja Schulze said she hopes that the changes will stop "throwaway culture" in Germany. She noted that 20% of trash collected in parks and other public spaces in Germany consists of single-use plastic items, primarily polystyrene containers.

The drive to reduce plastic pollution has hit the United States as well. Several major cities have banned the use of plastic straws, food containers, and shopping bags to reduce their plastic consumption. Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has also said he supports a nationwide ban on plastic bags.

The coronavirus pandemic has tested some anti-plastic policies as businesses became dependent on single-use items to avoid additional contact with customers. Some states, including Massachusetts, temporarily lifted their ban on plastic bags to stop customers from carrying in reusable bags from home that could transfer the virus to employees.

Germany amassed a record of 18.7 million tons of packaging waste in 2017, according to data published by the Federal Environmental Agency (UBA).

Polystyrene pollution

Polystyrene, we see it nearly every day, often blown into hedgerows and tumbling out of bins after a Saturday night. It keeps our takeaways hot, insulates our homes and safely transports everything from fresh fish to TVs, and even human organs, all around the world. What a hero! Yet, the devastation it reaps on our natural environment is far from heroic.

Plastic takes decades to degrade and microscopic particles have been found inside the bodies of fish, birds, other animals.

THIS ARTICLE DOES NOT INTEND TO HURT THE SENTIMENTS OF ANY INDIVIDUAL, COMMUNITY, SECT, OR RELIGION ETCETERA. THIS ARTICLE IS BASED PURELY ON THE AUTHOR'S PERSONAL VIEWS AND OPINIONS IN EXERCISE OF THE FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT GUARANTEED UNDER ARTICLE 19(1)(A) AND OTHER RELATED LAWS BEING FORCE IN INDIA, FOR THE TIME BEING.

Section Editor: Pushpit Singh | 30 Jun 2020 17:18pm IST


Tags : #Germany#saynotoplastic

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