Coffee cups to be hit with levy of up to 25 cent under new plans to tackle waste
The existing plastic bag levy will be increased from 22 cent to 25 cent.
Single-use coffee cups are to be hit with a levy of up to 25 cent under new Government plans to tackle single use plastic waste.
The Government announced a number of measures to change consumer and business behaviour regarding waste.
The exact figure will be arrived at following market research but it is likely to be between 10 cent and 25 cent.
Environment Minister Richard Bruton said coffee cups are one of the first measures the Government will use to get consumers to cut down on single-use plastic items.
The existing plastic bag levy is also set to be increased from 22 cent to 25 cent.
The levy will be put on all coffee cups, including disposable and compostable cups that are recyclable.
“There’s no doubt that some cups can be compostable and that if they made their way into the brown bin waste stream, they could be handled in a different way,” he told RTE radio.
We are a nation of tea and coffee drinkers ☕️ with over 22,000 disposable coffee and tea cups used every hour. We must do more to reduce the amount of waste we create pic.twitter.com/gG17rif1VS— Richard Bruton (@RichardbrutonTD) November 6, 2019
“The difficulty is we do not have the infrastructure in the retail sector to ensure that those compostable cups are making their way into brown bins,” he said.
“How we use and dispose of our resources is crucial, in fact it accounts for 60% of our emissions.
“We must be more conscious of the impact we are having by the daily choices we make.
“Sustainable alternatives exist for all the items we are purposing to levy and the purpose is to shift behaviour towards the use of these alternatives.”
“The introduction of a coffee cup levy has clear benefits for the environment, when you consider that 22,000 disposable coffee and tea cups are used every hour.”
“The coffee cup levy should also lead to savings for consumers who make the switch, as well as savings for retailers who have to carry less disposable stock.
“In introducing a coffee cup levy, clear pricing information will be vital,” he said.
Mr Bruton said the Government will call on shops to display pricing information so that their customers have full information on the price of coffee for customers who bring a keep-cup and what the charge is for getting a single use disposable cup.
A second phase of levies will come into effect from 2022 that will focus on take away food containers.
The third phase of levies will address food packaging in retail outlets and supermarkets, such as packaging for baked items, fruit and vegetables.
All of the revenue raised from these measures will go into the Environment Fund to be reinvested in environmental actions, such litter community and measures to tackle illegal dumping.