Giving a new life to plastic trash gets Carlos Bento out of bed every morning. But the coronavirus pandemic has seen revenues drop up to 40% at Micronipol, the large recycling facility he runs in central Portugal, and it faces an uncertain future.
Deadlines have to be respected, says the European Commission in response to calls by industry to lift an EU-wide ban on some single-use plastic items because of health and hygiene concerns raised during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Last year the EU passed ambitious new laws to reduce the consumption of single-use plastics. That same thinking now needs to be applied to the economy as a whole, argues Meadhbh Bolger, saying Europe can get started by setting targets in its upcoming Circular Economy Action Plan.
The Nepalese government has introduced a ban on single-use plastic on Mount Everest from January 2020 in an attempt to cut down on the trash left by mountaineers in what has turned into the world's highest landfill.
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