Environmental groups call for drastic measures against plastic gauze

To avoid plastic gauze, environmental groups call for drastic reductions. Strict regulation and bans had to be used to massively reduce plastic production and consumption, nature conservation organizations such as BUND, greenpeace and deutsche umwelthilfe explained in berlin on wednesday. On a list of demands to the federal government to pay a levy on particularly environmentally harmful disposable items such as plastic touts, disposable plastic bottles and coffee-to-go cups. A reasonable amount for a levy should be at least 20 cents, according to environmentalists.

According to the associations, plastic is one of the most serious and visible ecological burdens and overflows the environment – on land, in the sea and in the air. "Plastic avoidance is climate protection", said jurgen resch, managing director of deutsche umwelthilfe. In order to stop the flood of plastic, the entire value chain must be taken into consideration; previous political measures have not been sufficient. For example, disposable and packaging products should be replaced by reusable systems within a binding time frame and microplastic applications should be banned.

Resch said plastic bottles or beverage cartons had to be banned. Beyond beverage packaging, mandatory reusable quotas also had to be set for sales, transport and shipping packaging.

The wasteful use and careless throwing away had to be stopped, said barbara unmubig, chairman of the heinrich boll foundation. The environmental associations are also in favor of introducing speed limits and weight reductions for motor vehicles, up to and including a ban on suvs, to reduce tire abrasion. Tire abrasion produces thousands of tons of microplastics every year. BUND expert rolf buschmann says heavy suvs had a significant part in this.

There is also a call to set a target for waste reduction by 2030. Germany must make significant improvements in this area, says paper. In germany, he said, the amount of packaging waste has increased from year to year, to 227 kilograms per capita per year. A waste reduction target of no more than 90 kilos per capita per year should be set for packaging waste from 2030 onwards. "The future is unpacked", said greenpeace managing director martin kaiser.

In addition, there must be legal liability for damages according to the polluter-pays principle. Manufacturers are to be held responsible for the health, environmental and climate damage caused by their products. The associations also call for a stop to plastic waste exports. Eastern europe and southeast asia are now the dumping grounds for plastic waste from germany and around the world, kaiser said.


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