Surfers Against Sewage (SAS) is calling on Chancellor Philip Hammond to tackle the creation and use of avoidable single-use plastic in his Autumn Budget on Monday.
The charity wants the chancellor to introduce a plastic tax and support for a world-class inclusive Deposit Return Scheme for all drinks bottles.
Eliminating society’s plastic footprint and creating a truly circular economy will require bold and brilliant policies, innovation and sustainable alternatives.
Plastic production is set to quadruple by 2050, fuelled by new fossil fuel exploration such as fracking. Manufacturers must be held responsible for the full life-cycle of all of the plastic they produce: 100% recyclable should equate to 100% recycled.
Success to date
SAS campaigned successfully for the introduction of the 5p plastic bag charge, which has already reduced the circulation of plastic bags by 9bn.
The charity also recently delivered a petition to Theresa May; signed by 325,000 citizens, it called for the introduction of a comprehensive deposit return system (DRS) on plastic beverage bottle and containers.
A DRS is a proven mechanism to trap plastic in the recycling economy rather than on our beaches and in the wider environment.
The government will soon be consulting on the design of the English DRS system. SAS will be calling for it to be fully inclusive of beverage bottle sizes and materials, to create a truly world-class and effective system that will protect the environment, create jobs, reduce carbon emissions and prevent littering.
Earlier this year, Surfers Against Sewage, alongside 27 major environmental organisations, issued a joint response to the Treasury’s single-use plastic consultation.
The group called for a plastics tax to incentivise use of recycled plastics, reduce volumes of the most environmentally damaging and non-recyclable plastics and polymers and to extend producer responsibility so that producers and retailers are accountable for the full ‘end of life’ costs of the single-use plastics they put on the market.