Parliament introduces compostable cutlery to reduce plastic waste

UK Government Plastic Ban

The UK Parliament is set to start using compostable cutlery, coffee cups, drinking straws and a range of other items in a bid to rid the estate of single-use plastics.

Because of the nature of compostable products new waste bins will be introduced to capture those items and send them to a specialist waste facility.

The use of these compostable products is part of a larger scheme with the aim of removing all single-use plastics from the Commons and the Lords by the end of 2019.

The first phase saw the introduction of reusable coffee cups in June 2018, this was followed in October 2018 with a ban on selling bottled water in Parliament, removing 120,000 plastic bottles from circulation annually.

Sir Paul Beresford, chair of the Commons administration committee which recommended the proposals, said: “The measures we are introducing are ambitious and wide-ranging, covering not just coffee cups but an array of items from plastic bottles, our new compostable products, to condiment sachets and stationery.

“Our aim is to remove, as far as possible, disposable plastic items from the Parliamentary Estate. Our challenging targets reflect Parliament’s commitment to leading the way in environmental sustainability.”

Lord Laming, chairman of the House of Lords Services Committee, which agreed on the proposals for the Lords, added: “Parliament has acknowledged the damaging effect single-use disposable plastic is having on the environment and that it must lead the way in valuing our environmental future over convenience.

“This review has taken a holistic approach to plastic reduction, considering everything from disposable cutlery to packaging.”