Dublin Independent MEP, Nessa Childers, today welcomed Senator Grace O’Sullivan’s bill to ban microbeads and calls on the Government and Fianna Fail to support the bill. Ms Childers also said that she will table a priority question to the Commissioner on the compatibility of the proposed Irish legislation with EU law.
“The Irish Government should join the UK who have committed to reducing the release of these plastics into the sea, and support the other EU Members States who are calling for an EU wide ban.
“Micro plastics have been banned in a number of products in the UK, Canada and the US, and industry needs to quickly adapt and remove their usage. These plastics are causing damage to fresh water and marine life, and worryingly there is not enough conclusive research on their impact on human health.
“The European Commission is currently examining the issue, and a majority of MEPs support a ban on micro-plastics. What is now required is political pressure from the Member States to introduce legislation across the EU.
“Ireland was one of the first EU countries to introduce charges for plastic bags, and led the way regarding smoking in public. The issue of micro beads in the environment is a environmental and public health issue, and Ireland should lead from the front in removing them from our environment.