CDC is cutting back on single use plastics
Release date: 22 May 2018
Cotswold District Council will be carrying out an in-house single use plastics audit to identify sustainable or reusable alternatives for items such as drinking water cups and refuse sacks. There is also scope for the Council to apply the same considerations when engaging suppliers and contractors.
The in-house audit – which will be undertaken by the Council’s Energy and Resources Projects Officer - was discussed at the CDC Cabinet meeting on 17 May when Members agreed a Motion – submitted by Cllr Ray Brassington – to encourage a reduction in plastic waste and, specifically, single use plastics within the Council.
Cllr Sue Coakley (CDC Cabinet Member for the Environment) also noted that residents in the Cotswolds were already at the forefront of good recycling practice, achieving the highest rates across Gloucestershire, and added that she was very grateful for the positive response from the public With this in mind, she anticipated a good reception to a forthcoming District-wide waste and recycling service review which will help to reinforce the importance of waste minimisation, including advice to the public about ways to avoid single use plastic. She reiterated that single use plastic coffee cups can now be recycled at carton bring banks in the Cotswolds and was pleased that people were taking advantage of these facilities.
Cllr Coakley – who is also Chair of the Gloucestershire Joint Waste Committee (JWC) - concluded:
“The JWT has always been fully committed to reducing all unnecessary waste, including many single use plastics, and promotes seasonal events encouraging people to reduce, reuse and recycle. I will ensure that we continue with these efforts and take every opportunity to educate people about the need to find practical alternatives to single use plastics whenever possible – or to recycle when their use cannot be avoided. Across the country, manufacturers and retailers are waking up to the dangers to our planet caused by single use plastic thanks to calls from the government, and we are pleased to hear that Gloucestershire County Council and Cirencester Town Council recently committed to a crackdown on their use.”
Cllr Brassington commented:
“I welcome every effort to eliminate single use plastics and I am pleased that this Motion was so warmly welcomed. People are becoming more conscious about the global harm caused by the unnecessary accumulation of many forms of plastic waste. This Motion is a small step towards tackling this crisis but if others follow our lead we can generate a much wider response which will be a real force for good.”
Did you know?
- 300 million tons of new plastic is manufactured each year, half of which is single use plastic such as packaging. In many cases - including the use of plastic straws, takeaway food containers and coffee cups - there are practical alternatives available that are either reusable or sustainable.
- The Ellen MacArthur Foundation has estimated that by 2050 the plastic in our oceans could weighed more than the fish swimming in those waters. Moreover, plastics will stay within the environment for up to an estimated 600 years.
- Marine plastic leads to coastal/offshore dead zones, entanglement, death through ingestion, toxic transfer and, once degraded into micro plastics, contamination of the food chain – including our own. This means we are quite literally eating the plastic that is polluting our seas.