FCO reaches major milestone in plastic elimination campaign

27 Nov 2018 01:31 PM

The Foreign Office Minister of State Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon yesterday (Tuesday 27 November) announced a huge drop in single-use plastics being used by Foreign Office staff in the UK.

This announcement coincides with Lord Ahmad’s attendance at the Sustainable Blue Economy Conference in Kenya, and the first ministerial meeting of the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance, which has made eliminating plastic pollution from oceans its top priority.

Since February, the Foreign Office has successfully eliminated 97% of single-use plastics (SUPs). This means that around 1.56 million pieces of plastic have been removed from the UK estate annually. Per person, this means a drop in avoidable single use plastics from 310 to 10 in just 10 months.

Foreign Office Minister Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon yesterday said:

Plastic waste is a global problem that threatens ocean life and endangers whole ecosystems.

Every one of us has the power to make choices which can reduce our own plastic use. As we take our message around the world and call on other countries to take action, it is only right we strive to eliminate all avoidable single-use plastic here in the UK and it is fantastic to see the Foreign Office leading the way.

Eliminating plastic pollution was top of the agenda at the Sustainable Blue Economy conference in Nairobi yesterday, where Ministers and High Commissioners from Commonwealth countries, including Canada and Kenya, shared the ambitions and expertise they have in marine protection.

The Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance (CCOA), announced by the Prime Minister during the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London (16-18 April), aims to unite countries around the Commonwealth so they can work together to turn the tide on plastic entering the marine environment.

Each country has pledged to take action, such as banning microbeads, committing to cutting down on single use plastic bags, and other steps to eliminate avoidable plastic waste.


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