We all know about the plastic pollution problem that affects our Plastic Planet; we already reported about smart solutions such as the Ocean Cleanup Array and the microorganism that can biodegrade plastic.
Now there comes finally a European Union action whose goal is to reduce the consumption of the one-way disposable bags within 5 years by 80 percent.
A EU Commission draft bill that includes taxes, dues and prohibitions, shall regulate the use of plastic bags with a thickness of 0,05 millimeter. These are the bags used to pack in vegetables and fruits. The proposal doesn’t include the thicker bags that you can buy at the cash-desks, for instance.
According to the EU Parliament 100 billion of bags are used in Europe each year, which means 200 bags per citizen. Eight billions of these plastic objects find their way into the ocean, where they endanger the marine ecosystem.
Certainly the Parliament has to negotiate with the EU-Government after the European elections in autumn 2014. We could learn from Ireland, which already introduced a low charge for the use of plastic bags, and lowered the per capita consumption from over 300 to 21 bags.