2 June 2016 – An iconic symbol of our linear, throwaway economy, single-use plastic bags are a major source of environmental pollution, especially in marine environments where animals are often injured or killed after becoming entangled or ingesting plastic bags mistaken for food. According to the European Commission, an estimated 100 billion plastic carrier bags are used in the European Union every year – an average of almost 200 bags per capita. Around 90 percent of these are lightweight bags (thinner than 0.05 millimeters), and most are used only once before being thrown away.
In this month’s column, Clarissa takes a closer look at EU Directive 2015/720/EU (also known as the “Plastic Bags” directive) and discusses how various EU Member States are attempting to curb plastic bag consumption through a variety of regulations, including bans, levies, and taxes.
To read the article published in Resource Recycling magazine, click here.