Reusable cups at Armed Forces Day part of plan to reduce plastic waste



New efforts are being made to reduce plastic pollution at events in Plymouth, including a new reusable cup scheme being introduced at Armed Forces Day on Saturday 25 June.


Plymouth has put sustainability at the top of the agenda, with the creation of the new Plymouth Sound National Marine Park and the city’s aims to be carbon neutral by 2030. Plymouth City Council is also working in partnership with 17 organisations across England and France on the Preventing Plastic Pollution project, which seeks to understand and reduce the impacts of plastic pollution in the marine environment.


Work is underway to reduce the environmental impact of major events in Plymouth, including the British Firework Championships and Armed Forces Day, which attract thousands of visitors every year.


Councillor Pat Patel, Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture, Leisure & Sport, said: “We’re very proud of our world-class events programme in Plymouth. Each event we put on is hugely popular and attracts thousands of visitors into the city, providing valuable support to the local economy.


“But we’re very conscious of the environmental impact caused and we’re taking steps to minimise it, so that we can host amazing events and showcase Britain’s Ocean City to the rest of the world while still protecting our beautiful blue and green spaces.”


A recent survey asked event-goers what they thought about plastic usage and the steps they’d like to see being taken to reduce plastic waste, with feedback being taken on board.


As a result at Armed Forces Day this year there will be specific recycling bins for cans and plastic bottles as well as larger mixed recycling bins. The contents of the bins will be hand sorted and analysed to see if the can and bottles bins are more successful in reducing contamination.


The new reusable drinks cup scheme will mean there’s an additional upfront cost of £1 per drink on the first purchase. People can then choose to keep the cup or return it for a refund once they’ve finished.


Visitors are also encouraged to bring their own reusable coffee cups and water bottles, which can be refilled at the free water station next to the Plymouth Naval Memorial.


Plastic straws and cutlery had already been banned at event catering concessions and this year a new ban has been introduced on polystyrene trays, condiment sachets, drinks cartons, and non-recyclable bottles.


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