Fantastic day for the fight against litter 02 October 2015


We are celebrating Monday’s introduction of the single-use carrier bag charge across England, the first specific initiative aimed at reducing litter in over a decade. Plastic bags are one of the most highly visible forms of litter on our streets, roads, hedges, parks, trees, beaches and, ultimately, in our oceans, all with potentially devastating effects. This is hardly surprising when over eight billion bags are used by shoppers every year.

We have campaigned for years for the introduction of the charge, along with other environmental charities, as part of the “Break the Bag Habit” coalition.

In Wales, where a bag charge has been in place since 2011, there has been a reduction in bag use of around 70%

Each year, we survey the amount of litter in England and the 2013/14 survey found plastic bags to be littered on over one in ten sites surveyed.  Plastic bag litter was found on more sites than either chewing gum or dog fouling.

Allison Ogden-Newton, Keep Britain Tidy’s Chief Executive, said, “We applaud the introduction of the single-use carrier bag charge.

“This is the first government action in a decade that is specifically designed to tackle our country’s litter issue. We hope the charge will see a significant reduction in the use, and subsequent littering, of plastic bags.

“Obviously there is a lot more that needs to be done to change the behaviour of those who think it is acceptable to throw their rubbish on the floor but Monday marks a significant first step on the road to a litter-free country.”