A tax on takeaway boxes is to consider in an attempt to solve the problem of plastic waste.
In Wednesday’s Budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond is expected to call for proof that a tax on the use of the most environmentally friendly single-use plastic would help.
Single-use plastic packaging, bubble wrap, and polystyrene takeaway boxes.
Greenpeace said the ocean of plastic pollution was a “global emergency”.
The Treasury said that the work was going to examine the life cycle of single-use plastics.
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He did not suggest the investigation include plastic bottles, which can be recycled, although, in practice, many also end up in landfills or the sea.
However, the government has already announced its intention to examine the possibility of introducing a “reward” and” return to plastic bottles to try to improve recycling rates.
The Treasury said that the amount of single-use plastic wasted every year in the UK would fill the Royal Albert Hall in London 1,000 times and cited the success of the 5p charge on plastic bags to illustrate the feasibility of a levy system.
Birds, marine mammals and turtles die from eating or becoming entangled in plastic waste.
Sir David Attenborough recently described the “heartbreaking” sight of an albatross feeding plastic to its young chick instead of fish.
Tisha Brown, oceans campaigner of Greenpeace UK, said the move ” recognizes the importance of the problem and the urgency of a solution.”
The call for evidence is expected to be launched in early 2018.