The European Parliament voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to ban single-use plastic products such as straws, eating utensils and coffee sticks across the European Union.
The measure passed 571 to 53, with 34 abstentions.
If approved by the European Commission — the EU executive — and individual states, the ban would become law in 2021.
Supporters say plastics are a major source of pollution that chokes oceans, litters cities, and can take decades to disintegrate.
Some U.S. cities have moved to ban plastic straws in restaurants after a heartbreaking video of a wildlife rescuer pulling a straw out of a turtle’s bloody nose was posted on the internet earlier this year.
A consortium of European plastics manufacturers called the EU bill “disproportionate” and said banning single-use plastics discourages investment into new ways to recycle.
The EU plastics bill also includes deadlines for reducing or recycling other plastics such as bottles, fishing lines, food wrappers, and cigarette filters. (VOA)