UK pledges new funding for fight against plastic pollution

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UK Prime Minister Theresa May has pledged £61.4m (€71m) in funding to fight plastic pollution on entering into a new anti-plastic initiative.

On 15 April, May announced the new Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance – an agreement between the UK, Vanuatu, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Ghana to join forces in the fight against plastic pollution.

According to WWF-UK, the group has pledged to ban microbeads in rinse-off cosmetics and personal care products, as well as to cut plastic bag use, by 2021.

As part of the drive, the governments will work with organisations and businesses from across the Commonwealth to protect the environment.

Of the £61.4m (€71m) funding announced by May, £25m (€29m) will be used to help researchers investigate the issue of marine plastic from a scientific, economic and social perspective.

A further £20m (€23m) will be used to curb plastic and other environmental pollution generated by manufacturing in developing countries and prevent it entering the oceans.

The remaining £16.4m (€19m) will be devoted to improving waste management at a national and a city level to stop plastics entering the water, WWF-UK said.

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