In an article published on February 18, 2019 by news provider EcoWatch, reporter Olivia Rosane informed about the United Kingdom’s (UK) newly announced plans to “overhaul” its waste system. The future changes to the country’s waste system aim to “cut plastic pollution and move towards a more circular economy.” To support development of the new measures, the government has opened four public consultations to collect information on regulatory options being considered. These include:
- Extended producer responsibility: New regulations would make “businesses and manufacturers pay the full cost of recycling or disposing of their packaging waste”, the government announcement says. EcoWatch notes that currently “packaging producers in the UK pay about 10 percent of the cost of disposing of their packaging.” A consultation on the issue has been opened and will close on May 13, 2019.
- Plastic packaging tax: The government has launched a “consultation on introducing a world-leading tax on plastic packaging which does not meet a minimum threshold of at least 30% recycled content.” This tax would come into force in April 2022 (FPF reported), and the consultation is open until May 12, 2019.
- Consistency in recycling collections: The government is aiming to define “a consistent set of recyclable materials collected from all households and businesses, and consistent labelling on packaging so consumers know what they can recycle.” A consultation on the issue has been opened until May 13, 2019.
- Deposit return scheme: The UK is also considering the start of a deposit return scheme for cans and bottles. It has launched a consultation on the issue and aims to make sure that any scheme introduced would make it “easy for consumers to return drinks containers, leading to increased recycling rates and a reduction in littering.” The consultation is open until May 13, 2019.
Olivia Rosane (February 18, 2019). “UK Waste System ‘Overhaul’ Would Make Plastic Polluters Pay.” EcoWatch
UK (February 18, 2019). “Government sets out plans to overhaul waste system.”
UK Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (February 18, 2019). “Consultation on reforming the UK packaging producer responsibility system.”
UK Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (February 18, 2019). “Plastic Packaging Tax.”
UK Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (February 18, 2019). “Consultation on Consistency in Household and Business Recycling Collections in England.”
UK Department for Environment and Rural Affairs (February 18, 2019). “Introducing a Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.”
Julian Buckley (February 19, 2019). “UK launches consultation into waste management.” Plastic News Europe
Rachel Arthur (February 19, 2019). “UK sets out plastic packaging tax plans, seeking to boost use of recycled content.” Beverage Daily