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Plastic pollution

How Environmentally friendly are Biodegradable products – EEA briefing

Biodegradable, compostable and bio-based plastic products like shopping bags, packaging or drinking cups are being increasingly promoted as greener solution than traditional plastic products for consumers. But how environmentally-friendly are they? A European Environment Agency (EEA) briefing released today says clearer labelling and better public awareness will improve the correct disposal of the...
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Reuse and recycling are key to tackling Europe’s waste problem

European Union Member States face a dilemma on how to deal with the millions of tonnes of waste generated in Europe every year, amid a growing number of bans and tougher international rules on the export of certain waste to other countries. There is growing concern over the impact of such waste on the environment and our health, as well as the impacts of increased resource extraction, production a...
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Plastic particles found in Arctic

Even in the Arctic, microscopic particles of plastic are falling out of the sky with snow, a study has found.  The scientists said they were shocked by the sheer number of particles they found: more than 10,000 of them per litre in the Arctic.  It means that even there, people are likely to be breathing in microplastics from the air - though the health implications remain unclear.  The region is o...
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Humans generated 1.8bn tonnes of solid waste in 2016

Verde Environmental Consultants provide expert advisory, monitoring and assessment services from our offices in Wicklow, Cork, Mayo and Galway in soil, air, water, waste, energy, noise and ecology disciplines Our multidisciplinary approach and in-house expertise allows us to provide a breadth of relevant environmental consultancy and contracting services to both the private and public sectors...
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40-times more plastic in soils than in waters

Overall, around 5,120 tons of the seven types of plastic are discharged into the environment each year. According to Empa's modelling, around 4,400 tons of macroplastic are deposited on soils every year. In addition, about 100 tons of macroplastic are emitted to waters. 600 tons of microplastics end up in or on soils and about 15 tons in waters. The amount of microplastics is thus much smaller tha...
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What are European countries doing to tackle plastic waste?

Despite some promising efforts to address the growing problem of plastic waste like banning plastic shopping bags or straws, specific prevention targets for different plastic waste are still not widespread in Europe, according to a European Environment Agency (EEA) assessment published today. Only nine countries have explicit targets in place for plastic waste prevention. The EEA report ‘Preven...
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Smith calls for action plan to tackle plastic pollution in rivers and lakes

A local Fianna Fáil TD has written to the Minister for Communications, Climate Action, and Environment to express his concern at the high level of plastic pollution in lakes and rivers following representations from individuals and organisations. “It is clear to anyone who walks by, sails on, or uses our rivers or lakes how badly plastic pollution has become," explained Deputy Brendan Smith. "I...
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Malaysia returning plastic waste to countries of origin

Malaysia has become the latest Asian country to reject rubbish from rich countries.  It is to send as much as 3,000 tonnes of plastic waste back to the countries it came from, its environment minister said. Malaysia last year became the world's main destination for plastic waste after China banned its import, disrupting the flow of more than seven million tonnes of the rubbish a year.  Dozens o...
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Project on plastic pollution wins top prize at Eco Unesco awards

A project focused on the plastic pollution crisis has been awarded the top prize at the Eco Unesco Young Environmentalist Awards. The awards, which took place in the Convention Centre in Dublin last week, were the culmination of an island-wide programme for 10-18 year olds that recognises young people who take action to improve and protect the environment.  About 4,000 young people take part in...
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‘Ambitious’ single-use plastic straws and cutlery ban approved by European Council

The European Council has adopted a directive which introduces new restrictions on certain single-use plastic products, which includes a ban on single-use plastic straws, plates and cutlery by 2021.  They will set strict rules for reducing the type of products and packaging which are among the top ten most frequently found items polluting European beaches. Where alternatives are easily available...
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