Though the private sector has largely been leading the charge against climate change as of late, local and national governments are starting to step up to the plate to further catalyze the shift to a more sustainable economy.
As the UK and EU ramp up efforts to slash plastics pollution, the Scottish government has announced plans to impose a ban on the manufacture and sale of plastic-stemmed cotton swabs. Once in place, the ban is expected to reduce Scotland’s marine plastic pollution by a staggering 50 percent.
The decision stems from concerns about the number of cotton swabs that make their way into marine ecosystems after being flushed down the toilet. “Despite various campaigns, people are continuing to flush litter down their toilets and this has to stop,” said Roseanna Cunningham, Scotland’s Environment Secretary. “Scotland’s sewerage infrastructure collects and treats some 945 million liters of wastewater each day. These systems are not designed to remove small plastic items such as plastic buds, which can kill marine animals and birds that swallow them.” (…)