The EU Single Use Plastics Directive has entered into law after being ratified by the European Council of Ministers.
The new Directive will prevent the sale and use of 10 of the most polluting singe-use plastic products on the market in the EU, including cotton bud sticks, cutlery, straws, stirrers and polystyrene containers, where alternatives exist.
Other measures contained in the Directive include: extended producer responsibility (EPR) schemes for abandoned fishing equipment; reducing the consumption of food containers and beverage cups made from plastic; a 90 per cent separate collection target for plastic bottles by 2029; and a target to incorporate 25 per cent recycled plastic in PET bottles from 2025 and 30 per cent in all plastic bottles from 2030.
Oxo-degradable plastics will also be banned.
EU member states will have until 2021 to transpose the Directive into national legislation.
The full text of the Directive can be read on the EUR-Lex site.