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The Last Straw? EU Official Hints Ban on Single-Use Plastic Across Europe
A top EU official hinted that legislation to cut plastic waste in Europe is coming soon.
Frans Timmermans, the first vice president of the European Commission, made the comment after Britain's environment minister Michael Gove, a pro-Brexiter, suggested that staying in the EU would make it harder for the UK to create environmental laws such as banning plastic drinking straws.
Gove said being in the EU meant there were "some steps we might want to take environmentally that we can't yet."
Timmermans later tweeted to Gove: "One step ahead of you. EU legislation on single-use plastics coming before the summer. Maybe you can align with us?" He included several hashtags, including #EUDoesntSuck.
"Plastic straws are a scourge," Gove told Sky News. "They're just one example of the ways in which we pollute the oceans and damage marine wildlife. I want to do everything we can to restrict the use of plastic straws and we're exploring at the moment if we can ban them."
But the Conservative politician perhaps did not think of Scotland, which is part of the UK and within the EU. After announcing plans to outlaw plastic cotton buds, the Scottish government also announced intentions to ban plastic straws by 2019.
The EU plastics strategy, he added, would involve working with working with businesses to cut plastics and "find ways to re-use and recycle more plastic and avoid micro-plastic leakage."
New EU legislation to cut plastic waste would apply to the UK until Brexit is fully implemented, Reuters noted.
- BBC aims to be free of single-use plastics across all operations by ... ›
- Plastic Pollution Coalition ›
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‘Companies Should Not Be Allowed to Use Hazardous Ingredients in Products People Use’: Michelle Pfeiffer Speaks Up for Safer Cosmetics
The beauty products we put on our skin can have important consequences for our health. Just this March, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that some Claire's cosmetics had tested positive for asbestos. But the FDA could only issue a warning, not a recall, because current law does not empower the agency to do so.
Michelle Pfeiffer wants to change that.
The actress and Environmental Working Group (EWG) board member was spotted on Capitol Hill Thursday lobbying lawmakers on behalf of a bill that would increase oversight of the cosmetics industry, The Washington Post reported.
By Julia Conley
Scientists at the United Nations' intergovernmental body focusing on biodiversity sounded alarms earlier this month with its report on the looming potential extinction of one million species — but few heard their calls, according to a German newspaper report.
The climate crisis is a major concern for American voters with nearly 40 percent reporting the issue will help determine how they cast their ballots in the upcoming 2020 presidential election, according to a report compiled by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.
Of more than 1,000 registered voters surveyed on global warming, climate and energy policies, as well as personal and collective action, 38 percent said that a candidate's position on climate change is "very important" when it comes to determining who will win their vote. Overall, democratic candidates are under more pressure to provide green solutions as part of their campaign promises with 64 percent of Democrat voters saying they prioritize the issue compared with just 34 percent of Independents and 12 percent of Republicans.
President Donald Trump has agreed to sign a $19.1 billion disaster relief bill that will help Americans still recovering from the flooding, hurricanes and wildfires that have devastated parts of the country in the past two years. Senate Republicans said they struck a deal with the president to approve the measure, despite the fact that it did not include the funding he wanted for the U.S.-Mexican border, CNN reported.
"The U.S. Senate has just approved a 19 Billion Dollar Disaster Relief Bill, with my total approval. Great!" the president tweeted Thursday.