Time for charge on disposable coffee cups

An estimated 2.5 billion disposable paper coffee cups are thrown away in the UK every year, but it was revealed last year that less than one in 400 is recycled. The plastic lining in these cups means they cannot be recycled in normal depots and have to be put in special bins and sent to one of three dedicated recycling mills – meaning that millions end up in landfill instead.

The Liberal Democrats have been campaigning for a charge on coffee cups since September 2016, and were the only party to include the policy in their 2017 Manifesto.

Now MPs on the Environmental Audit Committee have published a report backing Liberal Democrat calls for a charge on disposable coffee cups.

The Committee has called on the Government to introduce a 25p levy on disposable coffee cups and a target to ensure they are all recycled by 2023. The policy would build on the success of the 5p charge on plastic bags introduced by the Liberal Democrats in government, which has slashed usage in England by over 80 per cent.

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