France's ban on plastic cups, plates and cutlery 'should be extended across Europe'

'We have to bring in the same legislation in all these countries to change the culture of waste'

Samuel Osborne
Monday 26 September 2016 11:10
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French President Francois Hollande says the ban is part of a larger push to make France 'an exemplary nation in terms of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, diversifying its energy model and increasing the deployment of renewable energy sources'
French President Francois Hollande says the ban is part of a larger push to make France 'an exemplary nation in terms of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, diversifying its energy model and increasing the deployment of renewable energy sources'

A French politician has called for France's ban on plastic cups, plates and cutlery to be implemented across Europe.

Arash Derambarsh, a municipal councillor for the commune of Courbevoie in Paris, previously led a successful campaign to ban French supermarkets from throwing away unsold food.

"This problem of recycling exists in all European countries," he told The Independent.

"We have to pass the same law in all European countries to tackle this very important problem of waste."

Mr Derambarsh described the French law, which comes into effect in 2020, as part of a "circular economy" of waste disposal.

He said he sees it as a "continuation of the law against food waste" and described it as "a good step, but not the last step".

The law allows exceptions for items made of compostable, biosourced materials.

"In the Latin countries, we think everything is infinite," Mr Derambarsh added. "We have to change our whole mentality.

"We have to bring in the same legislation in all these countries to change the culture of waste."

Renewable energy is making waves in Europe

The new law is part of France's Energy Transition for Green Growth Act, which will implement a sweeping ban on plastic bags in grocery shops and markets beginning in July.

French President Francois Hollande said the ban is part of a larger push intended to make France "an exemplary nation in terms of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, diversifying its energy model and increasing the deployment of renewable energy sources".

However, some have argued the ban violates the European Union rules on free movement of goods and protection of manufacturers.

Pack2Go Europe, a Brussels-based organisation representing European packaging manufacturers, has said it will fight the new law which it hopes will not spread to the rest of the continent.

"We are urging the European Commission to do the right thing and to take legal action against France for infringing European law," Pack2go Europe secretary general Eamonn Bates told The Associated Press. "If they don't, we will."

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