NATIONAL: Environment secretary suggests plastic straws could be banned

Plastic straws could be banned, the Environment Secretary has said.
Plastic straws could be banned, the Environment Secretary has said.
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PLASTIC straws could soon be banned in Britain, the Environment Secretary has suggested.

It is estimated the UK uses 8.5bn straws a year, according to the Marine Conservation Society, and plastic straws are one of the top 10 items found in beach clean-ups.

When asked whether he might outlaw plastic straws after Britain leaves the EU, Michael Gove told a podcast interview with the Daily Telegraph: ‘Watch this space.’

While maintaining a balanced approach would be needed, he added: ‘If it is bad, then banning it is a good thing.’

The Environment Secretary said putting a ban in place would be easier post-Brexit due to EU laws, according to the Telegraph.

Mr Gove is among dozens of senior Tories trying to cut down on their plastic use for Lent, with the Environment Secretary recently photographed clutching a disposable coffee cup.

Recently, high-profile nature documentary Blue Planet II has highlighted the damage plastic pollution is doing to the world’s oceans and their wildlife.

The BBC One show helped drive awareness of the issue of marine plastic pollution, with companies, organisations and politicians increasingly taking action to tackle the problem.

Firms such as JD Wetherspoon, Wagamama, Costa Coffee, Pizza Express and Waitrose have all started phasing out plastic straws or offering them on request only.