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SUP ban Cotton buds, plastic plates and straws made from single use plastic banned from today

The objective of the EU Directive is "to prevent and reduce the impact of certain plastic products on the environment"

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EU’s Single Use Plastic (SUP) Directive comes into effect this weekend, which means that many common items made with single use plastics will be banned from the Irish market.

Cotton bud sticks, cutlery, plates, stirrers, chopsticks, straws, expanded polystyrene single use food and beverage containers, and all oxo-degradable plastic products are on the list of products which are banned from being placed on the Irish market as of July 3.

The objective of the EU Directive is “to prevent and reduce the impact of certain plastic products on the environment, in particular the aquatic environment, and on human health, as well as to promote the transition to a circular economy with innovative and sustainable business models, products and materials”.

Single-use plastic products are used once, or for a short period of time, before being thrown away. The 10 most commonly found single-use plastic items represent 70pc of all marine litter in the EU, and up to 85pc of all marine litter in the EU is plastic.

“This is the latest in a serious of measures we’re taking to reduce plastic waste and better manage the waste we do produce. Our future depends on us rapidly changing the way we produce products; this will contribute to a much wider effort to address climate change,” said TD Alan Farrell, Fine Gael Climate Action Spokesperson.

“The introduction of this directive will allow us to build on our commitments to tackle climate change and meet our ambitious targets.

“Recent record temperatures in Canada are the latest reminder that we need to tackle Climate Change, now. We cannot afford to wait any longer to act,” Deputy Farrell added.

Other measures in the SUP Directive will come into effect in later years, including a requirement for producers of single use packaging to cover the costs of litter clean up by 2023, and for beverage producers to have a minimum of 25pc recycled plastic in SUP bottles by 2025.

Further commitment to waste reduction is continued in the government’s Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy, published in September last year.

“The Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy also commits Ireland to increase plastic recycling rates to 50pc by 2025, introducing a deposit return scheme which will accommodate plastic bottles; and by 2030, ensure that all packaging on the Irish market is reusable or recyclable,” said Deputy Farrell.

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