The European Parliament this week backed plans to tackle marine litter by targeting the 10 most commonly discarded single-use plastics found on beaches.

Action on lost and abandoned fishing gear also falls under the Single-Use Plastics Directive – part of the EU Plastics Strategy – endorsed by parliamentarians, which is a key part of the Circular Economy Action Plan. Bans for single-use plastics that already have alternatives on the market, like straws and cotton bud sticks, are some of the measures.

“Once implemented, the new rules will not only prevent plastic pollution, but also make the European Union the world leader in a more sustainable plastic policy. The European Parliament has played an essential role in laying the foundation for this transformation and in giving a chance to the industry to innovate, thus driving forward our circular economy,” said Jyrki Katainen, Vice-President, responsible for jobs, growth, investment and competitiveness.