Plastic Straws, Cotton Buds, and Stirrers Are Finally Getting Banned Next Year

By Shabana Arif on at

It's time to embrace soggy straws, bendy buds, and wooden stirrers as the government is cracking down on plastics - for real this time. The only way to get yourself a plastic straw now is in a pharmacy, or to ask very nicely at your local.

"Urgent and decisive action is needed to tackle plastic pollution and protect our environment. These items are often used for just a few minutes but take hundreds of years to break down, ending up in our seas and oceans and harming precious marine life," said UK environment secretary, Micheal Gove.

"So today I am taking action to turn the tide on plastic pollution, and ensure we leave our environment in a better state for future generations.”

That action includes having restaurants, pubs, and other places that would usually have an abundance of plastic straws bristling out of a pot on the bar, hiding them from sight and not handing them out to customers as default. Of course, you could always slip them a fiver and enjoy the luxury of a firm, hard straw between your lips, shooting delicious liquid into your mouth, but a lot of places may not bother to stock them at all, leaving you shit out of luck.

The only place that will still be allowed to sell them once the ban comes into effect in April 2020 will be registered pharmacies, to cater to people with medical needs or a disability. Which is almost confirmation that paper straws are terrible.

Despite the plastic problem - created by corporations that we're all now taking flack for as customers, who weren't offered an alternative until recently - some of you aren't happy with the replacements on offer. A petition to bring back McDonald's plastic straws amassed more than 34,000 signatures last month. And as we all know, a petition whinging about something absolutely has to be acted on. I'm sure we'll be getting that Game of Thrones season 8 remake any day now.

Yes paper straws are shit, but so is the amount of plastic crap floating around, and if McDonald's UK boss can keep his paper straw hard for 30 minutes, so can you. Less slobber is the key.

The government will apparently reassess the situation after one year in case there have been riots in the streets. [Positive.News]

Feature image credit: Unsplash