Wales is set to become the first part of the United Kingdom to legislate against most single-use plastics.
The Senedd has approved legislation to ban the sale of unnecessary, disposable products to consumers and from autumn 2023, local authorities will have the power to enforce the offence of supplying or offering to supply the items.
The legislation, known as The Environmental Protection (Single-use Plastic Products) (Wales) Bill, will restrict or ban plastic cutlery, plates, stirrers, drinking straws, plastic-stemmed cotton buds, balloon sticks, single-use carrier bags, oxo-degradable plastic products, polystyrene lids and expanded and foamed extruded polystyrene cups and food containers.
Other environmentally harmful single-use plastic products will be reviewed by the Welsh Government and may be banned or restricted in the future by passing regulations on the Bill.
The law will help to reduce plastic waste, assisting the efforts of individuals and businesses who are working towards achieving net zero.
Net zero is a commitment to ensure a balance between greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere and those removed from it. Businesses can work towards net zero by reducing the emissions that a company makes directly, the emissions it makes indirectly, and the emissions associated through its supply chain.
The climate crisis and carbon reduction targets will impact all businesses, directly or as part of the supply chain for other organisations.
As a nation Wales is aiming to achieve net zero by 2050, while the public sector has been set a target to reach the commitment by 2030.
Many large corporations have set similar targets or aim to reach net zero before 2050, meaning that SMEs in their supply chain, who are not necessarily obligated to meet these interim targets, need to demonstrate their own sustainable commitments.
Chambers Wales South East, South West and Mid has been supporting businesses on their net zero journeys by connecting members with partners with expertise in this area and sharing best practices through dedicated events.
Over the coming year, the Chamber will be providing further services to help businesses address net zero challenges, embrace innovative opportunities and ideas, and successfully implement strategies to achieve targets.