On 13th February 2019 Baroness Neville-Rolf asked the Government “whether they intend to introduce a simple and uniform system for both (1) labelling plastic and (2) bin collections in England, with the aim of reducing the use of plastic and encouraging recycling.” The Bishop of Salisbury, Rt Revd Nick Holtam, asked a follow up question:
The Lord Bishop of Salisbury: My Lords, the issue is not only recycle and reuse but reduce. I was at the celebration of the first anniversary of the Eco Synagogue a few weeks ago and saw real alternatives to plastic being developed by industry, such as Indonesian seaweed to replace 16 billion packets of ketchup, mayonnaise and the like. Alternatives are being produced but industry is so heavily invested in the production of plastic that it is difficult to make the commercial switch. What are the Government doing to fund the development of alternatives to plastic which will help us to make the change that is needed?
Lord Gardiner of Kimble: The right reverend Prelate referred to research. Innovation and research is a considerable part of the resources and waste strategy, and there is £20 million for the plastic research and innovation fund. This is about finding not only better forms of plastic but compostable alternatives. We have the exciting prospect of recycling and reusing more in dealing with our waste in this country.