Parliament seals ban on throwaway plastics by 2021

boxed water is better


This article is brought to you in association with the European Parliament.

On Wednesday, Parliament approved a new law banning single-use plastic items such as plates, cutlery, straws and cotton buds sticks.

560 MEPs voted in favour of the agreement with EU ministers, 35 against and 28 abstained.

The following products will be banned in the EU by 2021:

  • Single-use plastic cutlery (forks, knives, spoons and chopsticks)
  • Single-use plastic plates
  • Plastic straws
  • Cotton bud sticks made of plastic
  • Plastic balloon sticks
  • Oxo-degradable plastics and food containers and expanded polystyrene cups

New recycling target and more responsibility for producers

Member states will have to achieve a 90% collection target for plastic bottles by 2029, and plastic bottles will have to contain at least 25% of recycled content by 2025 and 30% by 2030.

The agreement also strengthens the application of the polluter pays principle, in particular for tobacco, by introducing extended responsibility for producers. This new regime will also apply to fishing gear, to ensure that manufacturers, and not fishermen, bear the costs of collecting nets lost at sea.

The legislation finally stipulates that labelling on the negative environmental impact of throwing cigarettes with plastic filters in the street should be mandatory, as well as for other products such as plastic cups, wet wipes and sanitary napkins.


Lead MEP Frédérique Ries (ALDE, BE) said: “This legislation will reduce the environmental damage bill by €22 billion – the estimated cost of plastic pollution in Europe until 2030.

Europe now has a legislative model to defend and promote at international level, given the global nature of the issue of marine pollution involving plastics. This is essential for the planet.”


According to the European Commission, more than 80% of marine litter is plastics. The products covered by this new law constitute 70% of all marine litter items. Due to its slow rate of decomposition, plastic accumulates in seas, oceans and on beaches in the EU and worldwide. Plastic residue is found in marine species – such as sea turtles, seals, whales and birds, but also in fish and shellfish, and therefore in the human food chain.


the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

How China raised the stakes for electric vehicles

10th ASEM in Milan and the importance of being one: EU’s big challenge on the way to China

Erasmus+ 2021-2027: more people to experience learning exchanges in Europe

MEPs want to fund crucial areas to stimulate European growth

What’s the difference between carbon negative and carbon neutral?

5 ways the digitisation of the global logistics industry can increase trade – and reduce poverty

What’s going on in Chernobyl today?

These are the world’s most competitive economies

From landlocked to land-linked: how the UN is helping some of the world’s poorest countries

International trade statistics: trends in third quarter 2019

Partnerships with civil society and youth ‘essential’ for a future that leaves no one behind: General Assembly President

What makes a good healthcare professional?

EU-US resume trade negotiations under the spell of NSA surveillance

Does Indonesia have the world’s most complicated elections?

UN health agency developing COVID-19 virus treatment master plan

#TakeYourSeat at the UN Climate Change Conference: a way for all people to join the global conversation

Global Goals top General Assembly President’s priority list

A busy year in the UN Security Council: more openness, diversity mark 2019

Why the world is not as globalized as you think

Can self-charging batteries keep us connected for ever? A young scientist explains

More than nine in ten children exposed to deadly air pollution

New legislation on transparency and sustainability of the EU risk assessment model in the food chain

Making money from meeting the SDGs? An overarching approach to sustainable development.

Lack of investment and ambition means Youth Guarantee not reaching potential

EU joint response to disasters: deal reached with Council

General Elections in Spain: Twitter organises the first digital debate to empower young people.

UN Assembly calls on all States to observe Olympic Truce throughout Tokyo Summer Games

Deeper reforms in Korea will ensure more inclusive and sustainable growth

Celebrating Gaston Ramon – the vet who discovered vaccinology’s secret weapon

The Europeans back Russia-Turkey on Syria: A ‘Waterloo’ for Saudis and their Crown Prince

JADE Generations Club: Connecting perspectives, changing Europe.

SMEs turning to alternative financing instruments as growth slows in bank lending

How biotechnology is evolving in the Fourth Industrial Revolution

The climate and COVID-19: a convergence of crises

Smart cities must pay more attention to the people who live in them

Continue ‘their mission’ urges UN chief, as the victims of the Baghdad bombing are remembered, 15 years on

UN chief condemns air strike that hit school bus in northern Yemen, killing scores of children

Coronavirus has shown us why we urgently need to make a basic income a reality

TTIP fight round 6: last chance for the negotiators to finally open up as they touch the Brussels ring

First seat projections for the next European Parliament

Where are the world’s nuclear weapons?

What does artificial intelligence do in medicine?

An ECB banker wants to change the European social model

Tackling water scarcity: 4 ways to pull H20 out of thin air

Where are people most proud to be European?

Tax revenues in Asian and Pacific economies rebound

Africa is helping the drone industry get off the ground. Here’s how

Britain’s Brexit election is its most volatile in memory – and 3 other superlatives about the snap poll

Financial support for workers affected by no-deal Brexit

“The winner is who can accelerate the transition to a new digital era”. The Sting reports live from EBS 2015: a Digital Europe 4.0

Explained, the economic ties between Europe and Asia

The European Parliament fails to really restrict the rating agencies

Financing the 2030 Agenda: What is it and why is it important?

From drought to floods in Somalia; displacement and hunger worsen, says UN

How can we produce enough protein to feed 10 billion people?

Foreign investment to be screened to protect EU countries’ strategic interests

EU unfolds strategy on the Egypt question

OECD Secretary-General statement on Europe Day

The opportunity of studying Medicine abroad

Central Asia bloc has important role in ‘peace, stability and prosperity’ beyond region, says Deputy UN chief

More Stings?


Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s