Stroud Green District Cllr Steve Hynd has visited 10 Downing Street to urge Boris Johnson to ban polluting single-use plastics.
A petition with 117,000 signatures was handed into Downing Street, ahead of the government closing its consultation on banning common single-use items last Saturday. The campaigners carried eye-catching placards and giant cutlery props with the wording ‘For Fork’s Sake’ and ‘Cut the Cutlery’.
More than 100,000 people have called on the government to ban the most polluting single-use plastic items, such as plastic cutlery, plates and polystyrene food packaging. The call comes as public pressure builds on Environment Secretary George Eustice to be quicker and more ambitious in tackling plastic pollution once and for all.
Cllr Hynd said: “Whilst we welcome the banning of a few of the plastics that are most commonly found littered in our natural environment, we need to be clear; we’re a long way off from being ‘world leaders’ in tackling plastic pollution. These are the first baby steps in a long journey ahead. The public has removed any room for doubt that DEFRA may have had, they need to crack on and ban these most polluting single-use plastics without any more delay or feet dragging. Once this has happened we can seriously start to address the other sources of plastic pollution.
“To address the other sources of plastic pollution we need two big policy announcements. The first, and this has to happen as part of the Environment Act target setting process, is to see a legally binding target to reduce single-use plastics as a whole by 50% by 2025. The second is to turbocharge the refill and reuse revolution. We are calling on the government to set a target of 25% of all packaging to be reusable or refillable by 2025. We have the answers to the plastic pollution crisis, the public supports them, now all we need is the political will.”
A staggering 51,000 members of the public have participated in the consultation, with the help of plastic pollution campaigners City to Sea and campaign group 38 Degrees.