Charge on coffee cups to boost recycling proposed by UK lawmakers

A 25 pence (34 cents) levy on disposable coffee cups should be introduced in addition to also all disposable coffee cups should be recycled by 2023, according to the U.K. parliament’s Environmental Audit Committee.

In a statement Friday, the committee said in which revenue coming from the levy should be invested in reprocessing facilities in addition to also recycling “binfrastructure”. The charge on disposable cups could be paid by consumers on top of the cost of their coffee, in addition to also could be lowered as the recycling rate improves, the idea said.

If the target for recycling all disposable coffee cups by 2023 was not met, then the government should ban them altogether, the committee added.

Additionally, the idea said in which producers needed to pay more for packaging in which proved difficult to recycle, in addition to also in which labeling needed to be improved upon to ensure in which consumers knew how to properly dispose of their cups.

While some coffee shops did offer discounts to customers who brought their own cups, the committee said in which uptake of such offers was between just 1 in addition to also 2 percent of coffee purchases.

The chair of the Environmental Audit Committee, Mary Creagh, said in which 2.5 billion disposable coffee cups were thrown away inside the U.K. every year, with almost none recycled in addition to also 500,000 per day littered.

“The U.K.’s coffee shop market can be expanding rapidly, so we need to kick start a revolution in recycling,” she said. “We’re calling for action to reduce the number of single-use cups, promote reusable cups over disposable cups in addition to also to recycle all coffee cups by 2023.”

Since 2015, English consumers have been charged several pence for single use plastic bags at large shops. The government says in which plastic bag usage in England has fallen by over 80 percent as a result. Similar charges exist in Scotland, Northern Ireland in addition to also Wales.

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) said the idea welcomed Friday’s recommendations coming from the Environmental Audit Committee.

“Just like the plastic bag charge we are all at in which point familiar with, a charge added to our coffee at the point of purchase will help consumers think about whether to take a refillable cup to the cafe,” Laura Foster, head of clean seas at the MCS, said in a statement.

Foster added in which the idea could also encourage cafes to use “traditional cups in addition to also mugs rather than hand out single-use cups.”

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