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25th Aug 2018

Plastic bag charges set to double in all shops

Kyle Picknell

Won’t someone please think of the children!

So here it is then, the worst news of the day, the week, the year. Prepare yourselves, cling onto your sofa, curl your toes to ensure your socks don’t blow off, hold your loved ones close.

The plastic bag charge is set to double. From 5p to 10p. In the distance, the faint sounds of sirens.

Theresa May and Environment Secretary Michael Gove are expected to announce the new price as part of an improved plan to tackle plastic pollution. Ministers have previously discussed a policy that could mean the banning of plastic straws and cotton buds, in a bid to end something termed Britain’s “throwaway culture”.

Since the 5p plastic bag charge was introduced in 2015, the amount of bags used in the seven main British supermarkets has decreased by 86%.

Small shops, with less than 250 employees were previously exempt from the scheme, but under the new legislation, newsagents and high street shops will now have to charge 10p too.

Customers bought around 25%  fewer plastic bags in 2017 compared to the year before – a decline of 300 million bags. Charitable donations as a result of the bag levy also reached £58.5 million.

Not all that bad actually, is it? I think we might, might just struggle on with a 10p charge on plastic bags. As you were.