Treasury vetoes plastic bag tax in favour of hike in landfill charges
Thursday 24 October 2002
Gordon Brown is preparing to increase the tax on dumping rubbish to encourage households and councils to recycle more waste and adopt greener policies.
But the Chancellor has vetoed plans for a 10p tax on supermarket plastic bags, which has been championed by Michael Meacher, the Environment minister.
The Treasury has decided that a levy on supermarket plastic bags to encourage people not to use so many is impractical and may lead to people taking black bin liners to the shops to get round the tax.
"There are no plans for this. Tax is a matter for the Treasury and the Chancellor is sceptical about this," a senior Treasury source said yesterday.
The idea of a plastic bag tax was floated by Mr Meacher, who was encouraged by the positive consumer response to such a tax in Ireland. He asked his officials to examine the practicalities of introducing the scheme in Britain.
But the Chancellor is understood to have stamped on the idea even before theminister has formally proposed the scheme to the Treasury.
Instead, the Chancellor is considering introducing a big hike in the landfill tax in next month's pre-budget report to force local councils to stop dumping so much waste and take recycling more seriously.
The tax may rise from £13 per tonne of rubbish dumped in landfill sites to about £30 a tonne after industry told the Treasury that the levy would not have an impact on behaviour unless it was at least doubled.
Money raised from the tax will be spent on environmental schemes and will not be used to pay for increases in schools and hospitals, Treasury officials indicated.
Environmental groups welcomed plans for raising the landfill tax but urged the Treasury to close a loophole that allows companies to avoid 20 per cent of tax. Downing Street will next month publish a strategy paper on disposing waste in England, with new ideas on how to encourage recycling.
- 2 How the language you speak changes your view of the world
- 4 Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
'Fire at every person you see': Israeli soldiers reveal they were ordered to shoot to kill in Gaza – even if the targets may have been civilians
Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
Who should I vote for? The Independent quiz matches best political party for undecided voters ahead of the general election
First-time buyers in London 'need to earn at least £77,000'
General Election 2015: Photographic history of Bullingdon Club tracked down - including new picture of David Cameron in his finery
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
£20000 - £25000 per annum + commission: SThree: Real Staffing's Pharmaceutical...
£18000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Can you speak German,...
£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity f...