A "fundamental shift" away from all types of single-use packaging is needed to help the environment, according to an influential groups of MPs.
Parliament's Environment Committee says 'simply replacing plastic wrappers and bottles with other materials isn't the answer'. The group says more needs to be done to encourage retailers and consumers to use refillable containers. A report calls for a 'modulated plastic packaging tax with lower fees for higher levels of recycled content' adding: "Imported, filled packaging should not be exempt from the tax as this could damage UK manufacturing." Neil Parish MP, chair of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee, said: "We all know that plastic pollution of our rivers and seas is a huge problem. However, replacing plastic with other materials isn’t always the best solution, as all materials have an environmental impact. "My committee is also concerned that compostable plastics have been introduced without the right infrastructure or consumer understanding about how to dispose of them. "Fundamentally, substitution is not the answer, and we need to look at ways to cut down on single use packaging. "Currently, packaging labelling can be confusing, unclear, or even misleading. Ensuring that all local authorities collect the same plastics for recycling will make it easier for packaging to be labelled, so consumers know whether that packaging is recyclable or not."
To read the report in full