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Government plans to eliminate plastic waste by 2042
Around 255,000 pieces of litter were removed from UK beaches as part of the Great British Beach Clean.
Theresa May outlines 25-year plan for the environment

Prime Minister Theresa May has announced new measures to eliminate all avoidable plastic waste by 2042.

The new measures include an extension to the 5p carrier bag charge to all retailers and work with supermarkets to encourage them to introduce plastic-free aisles. They form part of the government’s 25-year plan for the environment ‘to leave our environment in a better state than we found it’.

In her speech today (11 January), Theresa May said: “In years to come, I think people will be shocked at how today we allow so much plastic to be produced needlessly. This truly is one of the great environmental scourges of our time.”

Mrs May outlined how the government intends to look at how the tax system or charges could further reduce the amount of plastic waste created by industry. She added that a call for evidence on how to reduce since use plastics will begin next month.

The Prime Minister also confirmed that she would be injecting new funding into plastics innovation through a bid into the government’s £7 billion research and development pot.

“Today I can confirm that the UK will demonstrate global leadership,” she said. “We must reduce the demand for plastic, reduce the number of plastics in circulation and improve our recycling rates. To tackle it we will take action at every stage of the production and consumption of plastic.”

Since the 1950s, an estimated 8.3 billion tonnes of plastic waste is thought to have been produced. The government says that, without urgent action to cut down this demand, then it is likely to be around 34 billion tonnes by 2050.

In September 2017, some 255,000 pieces of litter were removed from UK beaches as part of the Great British Beach Clean. Figures published by the Marine Conservation Society show that much of this litter was from food and drinks items, such as plastic cups, straws and cutlery. 

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Newborn okapi named after Meghan Markle

News Story 1
 An endangered okapi recently born at London Zoo has been named Meghan - after Prince Harry’s fiancé Meghan Markle - in celebration of the upcoming royal wedding. Okapis are classed as endangered in the wild, having suffered ongoing declines since 1995. Zookeeper Gemma Metcalf said: “We’re very pleased with how mother and baby are doing. Oni is being very attentive, making sure she regularly licks her clean and keeping a watchful eye over Meghan as she sleeps.” Image © ZSL London Zoo  

News Shorts
Ten new cases of Alabama rot confirmed

Anderson Moores Veterinary Specialists has confirmed 10 new cases of Alabama rot, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the UK to 122.

In a Facebook post, the referral centre said the cases were from County Durham, West Yorkshire, Greater Manchester, Staffordshire, Sussex, West Somerset, Devon, and Powys.

Pet owners are urged to remain vigilant and seek advice from their vet if their dog develops unexplained skin lesions/sores.