EU Parliament to phase out plastic water bottles

June 12, 2018
The European Parliament is phasing out plastic bottles to help combat the eight million tonnes of plastic waste polluting the world's oceans annually

The European Parliament has told its lawmakers and staff to set an example for EU citizens by no longer drinking water from plastic bottles by next year.

The European Parliament bureau headed by Antonio Tajani and 14 vice presidents adopted a measure late Monday to phase out the and build a network of drinking fountains.

"Happy to announce that the EP bureau has decided to get rid of all bottles and minimise single use plastic altogether at the from July 2019," tweeted Heidi Hautala, an EP vice president, on Tuesday.

"Phase out already under way! EP will lead by example!," added Hautala, a Finnish ecologist.

The move comes amid broader European Union and international efforts to stop eight million tonnes of plastic waste polluting the world's oceans annually.

One million bottles were consumed last year during events and meetings in the EP which gathers in the French city of Strasbourg and also in Brussels.

The European Commission, the 28-nation EU's executive arm, last month proposed a bloc-wide ban on single-use plastics such as straws, cutlery and cotton buds.

The commission hopes the measure will be endorsed by the European Parliament and the member states before its mandate ends in 2019, though it will unlikely enter into force before 2022.

The commission also proposed that member countries collect 90 percent of single-use plastic drinks bottles by 2025, through deposit refund schemes.

Explore further: EU seeks to give millions better access to drinking water (Update)

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Mount Everest, the high-altitude rubbish dump

June 17, 2018

Decades of commercial mountaineering have turned Mount Everest into the world's highest rubbish dump as an increasing number of big-spending climbers pay little attention to the ugly footprint they leave behind.

When the river runs high

June 15, 2018

A massive world-wide study of dry riverbeds has found they're contributing more carbon emissions than previously thought, and this could help scientists better understand how to fight climate change.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.