New campaign to reduce bag use

The UK Government has launched a new campaign to get consumers re-using shopping bags after it emerged each person gets through an average of 13,000 in their life.

In 2008 alone, 9.9 billion plastic carriers were distributed – enough to fill 188 Olympic swimming pools or to stretch to the moon and back seven times.

Environment Minister Jane Kennedy explained the current rate of use is unsustainable, adding that retailers and the public are in the process of trying to reverse the trend.

“I think if we really can ‘get a bag habit’ and remember to reuse our bags, it puts us on the right track to doing even more to reduce the amount of waste we’re sending to landfill,” she added.

The average shopper uses more than 160 new carriers per annum and the new campaign, launched with the British Retail Consortium aims to cut that number by 50 per cent by the end of May this year.

Since 2006, retailers have managed to reduce the amount of bags they distribute by 26 per cent.

It comes a week after Westminster teamed up with the Royal Horticultural Society to launch the We Will If You Will campaign to get people growing and eating their own food.

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