A London MEP has called for the adoption of tough new measures to improve plastic recycling and prevent plastic waste from polluting oceans.
Jean Lambert, a Green MEP (left), said: “Next year we will see new EU legislation on the disposal and recycling of plastic waste, and I hope these new rules will tackle plastic’s increasing impact on the marine environment as a key element.”
She said oceans are under increasing stress from human activity.
“Protecting our seas isn’t just about regulating what we take from them, it’s about what we put into them too,” she added.
Lambert’s comments came as she visited the Greenpeace vessel ‘Arctic Sunrise’ at a London Docklands event to mark World Oceans Day (8 June).
Meanwhile, a European Commission consultation on plastic waste closed on 7 June.
The consultation, launched in March, called for views on the possible use of landfill bans, taxes and “pay as you throw” schemes, the effectiveness of recycling targets, and how existing legislation could be adapted to promote reuse, recycling and recovery of plastic.
Environment Commissioner Janez Potočnik said that, although managing plastic waste was a major challenge, it was also a big opportunity for resource efficiency.