UK to consult on plastic packaging tax, chancellor says

The government is to introduce a new tax on plastic packaging as it seeks to ramp up efforts to tackle the scourge of litter and waste from single-use plastics, it was confirmed in the budget. Food and drink companies will be taxed on plastic packaging that does not include at least 30% recycled content, in a drive to reduce dependence on “virgin plastics” that are difficult or impossible to recycle, such as black food trays and plastic straws. But the

Unilever partners with Veolia to create circular economy for plastic packaging

Consumer goods giant Unilever has today (24 October) agreed a partnership with waste management Veolia, which will see the companies work together to develop innovative solutions to the plastic waste crisis. Through the partnership, the two companies will invest in recycling structure capacity and develop new, closed-loop processes and business models Under the new partnership, the firms will partner for a three-year period to develop emerging technologies that could create circular economy solutions for the world’s plastic waste streams. Starting in India and

Walkers to launch UK’s first crisp packet recycling scheme

The UK’s biggest crisp brand Walkers has unveiled plans to launch a nationwide crisp packet recycling scheme, following months of consumer protests against its hard-to-recycle packaging. Walkers currently produces more than 7,000 non-recyclable crisp packets every minute. image: Si Griffiths The company, which is a subsidiary of global food and beverage giant PepsiCo, has partnered with recycling firm TerraCycle to develop a method of recycling the packets. The method involves cleaning and shredding the metallised film, allowing it to be melted into small

Inside Unilever’s plastics packaging strategy

Unilever’s chief R&D officer David Blanchard has outlined the company’s three-pillar approach to improving the recyclability of its product packaging, focusing on “less”, “better” and “no plastics” solutions. Unilever has committed to increasing the recycled plastic content in its packaging to at least 25% by 2025 In January 2017, corporate behemoth Unilever unveiled a new commitment to ensuring that all of its plastic packaging is fully reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. The commitment was built on a recognition that the global

Plastic-eating fungus could help fight against waste

A fungus that can “eat” plastic in weeks rather than years could help fight the growing plastic waste problem, according to a report by Kew Gardens. It can take decades or sometimes hundreds of years for some plastics to properly degrade. But a study on a waste site in Islamabad, Pakistan, isolated a fungus in the soil that quickly broke down chemical bonds. It took just two months for the fungi – Aspergillus tubingensis – to biodegrade a type of plastic called polyester

Plan to clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch gets underway

An ambitious project to clean up the ocean’s plastic pollution got underway over the weekend as members of The Ocean Cleanup project began towing their system out to sea. If it works as expected, they’ll try to take a bite out of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch — a huge collection of floating trash that’s three times the size of France, or about double the size of Texas. The Ocean Cleanup System 001 consists of a 2,000 foot (600 meter)

The Salt In Your Food Might Have Plastic In It, Says IIT-B’s Recent Study

The fact that plastic is harming the environment is no secret. While steps are being taken to reduce the usage of plastic, it is already present in every aspect of our lives – even salt. According to a recent study by a team of the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay, the presence of microplastics has been detected in some table salt brands in the country. These microplastics are really tiny particles of plastic, that are less than 5 mm in diameter. A

M&S to phase out plastic cutlery in cafés

Marks and Spencer (M&S) will start phasing out plastic cutlery across its in-store cafés next month in a move it claims will remove 75 million pieces of plastic from its waste stream annually. M&S currently hands out 75 million pieces of plastic cutlery in its cafe’s each year The phase-out will begin 1 September, with M&S set to replace plastic knives, forks and spoons with wooden alternatives. It builds on plans to replace plastic straws with biodegradable paper alternatives in cafes. Once the

Biggest Effort to Clear 1 Trillion Pieces of Plastic

Boyan Slat is a 23-year-old Dutch inventor, and founder of the highly ambitious Ocean Cleanup project. And in a little over a week, the group will embark on a complex plan to reduce the size of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch by half within the next five years.   The initiative has been a long time coming, having first been started by Slat in 2013 at the tender age of 18. Five years later, having raised over $31 million for the project,

Hilton to be the sustainability role model for the hotel industry

We are witnessing a Golden Age of travel, with more and more people realising ..  the importance of maintaining a healthy work life balance. India ranked seventh in the world in terms of travel and tourism’s total contribution to GDP in 2017. In CY2017, foreign tourist arrival in India stood at 10.177 million and reached 2.12 million in CY 2018 (up to February), making the country earn foreign exchange of around US$ 2.706 billion, from the tourism sector. This in turn sets the