Ban comes almost two years after Government opposed Green Party legislation on issue
The Green Party have welcomed the news that the Government have approved legislation to ban microbeads in Ireland.
The development comes almost two years after Senator Grace O’Sullivan’s microbead legislation was voted down in the Seanad by Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil.
Speaking today, Senator O’Sullivan said: “The Government have taken their time to make progress on this issue, but we’re glad they’re finally acting, and have approved legislation to enforce a ban on harmful microbeads. I have been raising this issue for years – now I’m looking forward to playing my part in helping comprehensive legislation pass in the Seanad.
“Plastic pollution is a massive issue – and we’re becoming more and more aware of how damaging it is. An NUIG report, published last year, found that 73% of deep water fish in Irish waters had ingested plastic particles, one of the highest frequencies in fish anywhere in the world ever reported. Every year, over 110 million tonnes of plastic is produced. Of this, up to 43% ends up in landfill. According to the UN, 8 million tonnes of plastic leak into oceans each year. This is equivalent to dumping a truck of plastic into the sea every minute. It is now predicted that by 2050, there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish and that 99 per cent of seabirds will have ingested plastic.
“This Bill is a welcome step – but it must be part of a wider push to protect our oceans, and reduce plastic waste.”
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