The government has received 'record-breaking' public support for tackling plastic pollution through the tax system.

The Treasury say the number of responses to their call for evidence was 'unprecedented'.

For the first time in its history, 162,000 responses were received from people supporting the bill, to reduce single-use plastics and boost recycling.

They will now be used to help influence the Chancellor's next budget announcement in November.

Surfers Against Sewage, based in St Agnes, support the possible tax.

Hugo Tagholm, CEO of Surfers Against Sewage, said they are 'delighted' with the overwhelming public response to the consultation.

He said: "This is a clear indication of the public appetite for more fiscal interventions to help reduce plastic pollution littering our environment, from inner-city streets and countryside to our oceans."

Surfers Against Sewage host regular beach cleans, like this one on Perranporth Beach in Cornwall. Credit: ITV West Country

Some of the measures being considered include using the tax system to:

  • Encourage greater use of recycled plastic in manufacturing.

  • Discourage the use of plastics difficult to recycle.

  • Reduce demand for single-use plastics like coffee-cups and takeaway packaging.

  • Encourage further recycling, possibly with a deposit return system.

The Exchequer Secretary visited Cornwall's Perranporth Beach earlier this week. Credit: ITV West Country

Tackling the scandal of plastic pollution is one of our top priorities and we know the public is right behind us. I've been overwhelmed by the public support and the responses we've received will be invaluable as we develop our plans for using the tax system to combat this.

Robert Jenrick MP, The Exchequer Secretary