25-year Environment Plan launched that aims to boost plastics recycling


The 25-year Environment plan was launched today in a speech by the Prime Minister Theresa May, outlining how the Government will improve the environment over a generation.   

One of the main issues that was highlighted within the speech was plastics 


The Prime Minister outlined plans to stop avoidable plastic waste by: 

  • Extending the 5p plastic bag charge to small retailers 
  • Removing consumer single use plastics from Government estate 
  • Manufacturers taking responsibility for the effects of the plastic they produce 
  • Working with retailers to launch plastic-free supermarket aisles. 

By putting these objectives into action, it is hoped that it will reduce the amount of plastic being produced, as well as attempting to drive a positive change globally by committing overseas aid to support nations combatting plastic waste.  

In the 25-year Environment Plan, the Government suggested that: 

  • Local authorities will be encouraged to improve recycling collections to lead to high quality recycling
  • It will work with industry to rationalise the amount of plastics used for packaging to enable easier recycling and improve the quality of collections 
  • It will investigate reform of the Producer Responsibility Regulations to incentivise producers to take more responsibility  
  • Innovate UK will be encouraged to develop more research and development into plastics leading to greater reuse and recycling. 

Environment Secretary Michael Gove said: “Our Environment Plan sets out how over the next 25 years we will radically reduce the waste that is choking oceans and rivers, cleanse our air of toxic pollutants and create new habitats for our most precious wildlife to thrive. 

The plan follows a call for evidence on reward and return schemes for drink containers, including plastic bottles. With findings currently being analysed, it is expected that results will be released in the Spring.