Plastics: Waste

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 30th September 2019.

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Photo of Anna McMorrin Anna McMorrin Labour, Cardiff North

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to Policy Connects report entitled Plastic Packaging Plan: achieving zero 'waste' exports, published January 2019, that highlighted UK exports of plastic packaging overseas stood at 4.15 million tonnes between 2010-2017, what steps her Department are taking to ensure the UK is a net-zero exporter of plastic packaging by 2030.

Photo of Anna McMorrin Anna McMorrin Labour, Cardiff North

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the merits of the UK becoming a net-zero exporter of plastic packaging by 2030.

Photo of Rebecca Pow Rebecca Pow The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

We have made no formal assessment of becoming a “net-zero exporter of plastic packaging”.

The Resources and Waste strategy sets out Governments aim to significantly increase UKs reprocessing capacity, including for plastics. This will be achieved by providing a large and stable supply of recyclable waste materials, increasing the quality of the waste materials to be recycled, improving demand for recycled materials and levelling the playing field for UK reprocessors through minimising illegal waste exports.

Government has recently consulted on wide ranging reforms to support these aims through greater consistency in household and business recycling, reform of packaging producer responsibility, and the introduction of a deposit return scheme for drinks containers.

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