From April 2020 all plastic straws and stirrers are to be banned in England. However only plastic stirrers will be completely banned (currently 316 million are used in a year), as plastic straws will be kept only in restaurants for the use of people with disabilities.
How will plastic straws be affected?
All shops including supermarkets will not be allowed to sell the straws. However, they will be on sale by registered pharmacies in store and online. This is because people with a disability have highlighted the fact that plastic straws are essential for everyday life and a total ban could lead to dehydration.
Bars and restaurants will also be banned from displaying plastic straws and will not be allowed to serve them unless asked for by the customer.
What else is being covered in this new control?
Plastic stirrers will be subject ton total ban. However, plastic-stemmed cotton buds, although restricted from general sale to the public, they will be available. They will be accessible to medical and scientific laboratories will be able to buy them for research and for forensic tasks in criminal investigations.
Defra have counted nearly 1.8b plastic stemmed cotton buds are used and thrown away every year in England.
Is this really going to happen?
This is a question I am sure we will all we are asking ourselves – banning plastic straws has been up in the air for years but this time its serious. In April 2020 these new controls will be put into place and the ban will be real!
What happens to the cotton buds?
- They pass through fine screens and enter rivers and seas
- Cotton buds break down into fragments over time
- UV rays start to process which is then continued by oxidation
- Waves break them up further
- Plastic fragments then enter the food chain
- Fish and marine life cannot distinguish them from food
- Thousands of dead animals
This is a horrible recurring chain that we can break together!