Government 'monitoring' plastic bag levy schemes

The government is “monitoring” the results of schemes to charge for plastic bags, as Northern Ireland introduces a levy today.

We want to work with retailers to help them lift their game to cut the number of bags they hand out.

We are monitoring the results of charging schemes and the outcome of the Scottish consultation on a charge.

– Environment department (Defra) spokesman

The Break The Bag Habit coalition of conservation and anti-litter groups have attacked the government for not following Wales and Northern Ireland’s move to introduce a charge.

Wales introduced a 5p charge on single-use bags 18 months ago and a similar scheme is expected to be introduced in Scotland.