5p charge for plastic bags

A 5p charge for plastic bags at large supermarkets is going to be introduced in England in 2015: it is already in existence in Wales and Northern Ireland, and Scotland will be introducing such a charge in 2014. It is the annual party conference season in Britain, and this sounds like one very Liberal Democrat policy.

I think it is a good idea, not necessarily because it will do a really huge amount of good to the environment, but because it will raise people’s awareness on environmental issues. This policy is symbolic, because plastic bags are very visible and everyday, but important nevertheless. Perhaps I am not opposed to such a bag tax, as carrying a shopping bag has become ingrained in me, after spending some time in Germany, and there is no more depressing sight than seeing a lonely, brightly-coloured plastic bag being forlornly tossed about by wind.