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MEPs vote to ban single-use plastics

Directive could come into effect in 2021

The European parliament has voted to ban single-use plastic cutlery, cotton buds, straws and stirrers.

The vote by MEPs paves the way for a ban on single-use plastic cutlery, cotton buds, straws and stirrers as part of a sweeping law against waste.

A total 560 MEPs voted in favour, while there were 35 against, and 28 abstentions. Once the directive has gone through the formality of being published in the EU rulebook, member states will have two years to implement the directive.

That means it could come into effect as soon as 2021.

The directive will also ban single-use polystyrene cups as well as those made from oxo-degradable plastics that disintegrate into tiny fragments - and are sometimes misclassified as biodegradable.

Meanwhile, by 2025, plastic bottles should be made of 25% recycled content, while a collection target of 90% for recyclable plastic bottles has been set for 2029.

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