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EU to solve plastic bottle issue

The European Union took up the task of addressing the problems of plastic bottle pollution, according to The Spectator.

From this summer, manufacturers of plastic bottles sold in the EU must attach the cap to the rest of the bottle. Thus, consumers are less likely to throw it away, contributing to the recycling of both bottles and caps at once.

However, people have already started complaining about the inconvenience of the new bottle design. They note that they find it difficult to drink from the new bottles, as the cap gets in the way or that it is difficult to pour water from it.

The easiest solution to the problem is to rip off the cap. However, this would ruin the whole idea of the new rules. According to the new mandatory standards, a force of at least 25 Newtons must be applied to rip the cap off.

Tethered bottle caps represent another example of the EU approach. However, the real problem is that plastic takes too long to decompose when released into the environment. This is what makes litter a serious and long-term issue.

Long-term issue

The EU needs to design or encourage the development of plastics that decompose in the environment within weeks or months. Paper and cardboard would be a good example to follow, according to The Spectator. The problem of single-use plastic pollution would disappear once this milestone was reached. This would guarantee the disappearance of harmful plastic for at least the next few decades.

Meanwhile, tethered bottle caps look set to become an example of the futility of Brexit when it comes to trying to circumvent EU product standards. As these caps become commonplace in the UK over the next few months, it will be a sign that manufacturers are going to follow EU standards even when catering for the UK market.

There is no point in the extra cost of running two parallel production lines. No manufacturer is going to split their products into those designed for the UK and EU market. If a UK resident voted in favour of Brexit to avoid the EU’s intrusive rules, disappointment would follow, Ross Clark wrote.

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