Defra releases 5p bag guidance; BPF reports solid UK plastics performance; Edinburgh recycling doubles; Torbay launches Green Points scheme
Defra releases 5p bag guidance
Defra has released information for consumers and retailers about the 5p charge for single-use plastic carrier bags which will be introduced on 5 October 2015.
All retailers with 250 or more full-time equivalent employees will have to charge the fee for applicable carrier bags.
The scheme aims to reduce the use of single-use plastic carrier bags, and the litter associated with them, by encouraging people to re-use bags or to use “bags for life”.
It is noted that while there is currently no exemption for biodegradable bags, Defra is reviewing industry standards for the biodegradability of lightweight plastics.
BPF reports solid UK plastics performance
The British Plastics Federation (BPF) has reported strong performance from the UK plastics industry based on the results of the survey which was conducted over June and July.
Members have reported that among the strongest sectors were manufacturers of technical components, benefiting from the re-shoring of existing projects from China and from the growing preference of UK design houses to work with UK manufacturers
In packaging markets, levels of innovation by UK firms are very high with considerable progress registered in the lightweighting of packs.
Edinburgh recycling doubles
Edinburgh recycling rates have doubled in the past year following the shake-up of collections which included halving the size of wheelie bins for household waste.
The city council hailed the figures as a major success.
In January, the council said that the new bins had resulted in an 85% increase in recycling with the latest figures showing that this has increased to 102%.
Torbay launches Green Points scheme
Torbay Council has launched a Green Points scheme that will reward residents for reducing, reusing and recycling as well as supporting local charity projects and businesses.
Every household in Torbay will receive a welcome pack, containing information about the scheme and how to recycle.
Users of the scheme will obtain a card and key fob that they can use to get discounts in more than 60 local businesses across the borough.
In addition, the Green Points will raise money for local charity projects, with £6,000 to be split between five charities at the end of 12 months. Each charity is guaranteed to receive at least £500.