London calls for non-recyclable coffee cup ban

The London Assembly has called on the Mayor to lobby the British government to introduce a tax on single-use plastics and ban single-use, non-recyclable hot drinks cups.

The London Assembly is a 25-member elected body that scrutinises the activities of the Mayor of London. The Assembly Member who proposed the motion, Léonie Cooper, says “with plastic polluting our rivers and oceans, causing terrible consequences for wildlife and our environment, we need urgent action”.

“The Mayor has led in helping Londoners to tackle disposable plastic use, not least with the successful water refill scheme. Londoners clearly want to help, but their ability to reduce their disposable use does depend on the availability – or lack thereof – of suitable alternatives,” Léonie says.

“The government needs to step up and do more, not least with the introduction of a tax on all single-use plastics and a ban on non-recyclable coffee cups. I’d also like to see the Mayor lobby the government to designate London as a pilot city for their proposed Deposit Return Scheme, something there is a real appetite for here in the capital.”

While no single-use coffee cup bans have been implemented in Australia yet, the South Australian Government announced its intentions to ban a range of single-use plastics, under proposed legislation to be introduced into state parliament.

SA Environment Minister David Speirs has released a report, Turning the Tide on Single Use Plastics: The Next Steps, which outlines how the legislation will ban products including plastic straws, cutlery and stirrers.

“In light of this overwhelming community support, the Marshall Liberal Government has developed a plan to ban single-use plastic products and other single-use items,” David says.

“At first, we will look at products including plastic straws, cutlery and stirrers with items such as takeaway polystyrene containers and cups next. Further consideration would be needed when looking at takeaway coffee cups, plastic bags and other takeaway food service items following consultation. We will release draft legislation for further public consultation later this year with the intention to introduce it to the Parliament in 2020.”

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