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Hundreds of constituents are giving Keep Cups to their TDs today to support the Waste Reduction Bill

13 Jun 2018

June 13, 2018
For immediate release

Campaigners launch briefing on deposit refund scheme that debunks Minister Naughten’s ‘Six Common Myths’ about the proposal

NO FEE0181 Sick of Plastic Campaign at Dail copyIn an unusual action by Friends of the Earth today, their supporters will present Keep Cups to every TD in Ireland at Buswells Hotel from 12:30 to 14:00.

The environmental organisation recently launched a fundraising appeal to send Keep Cups to TDs following Environment Minister Denis Naughten’s obstruction of the Waste Reduction Bill over his opposition to the proposed deposit-and-return scheme.

Over 200 people from every constituency in Ireland donated to Friends of the Earths’ campaign to send Keep Cups to TDs along with a request for their elected representatives to appeal to Minister Naughten to stop blocking the Waste Bill on a procedural technicality.

The previous week, more than 2,000 supporters emailed the Oireachtas Environment Committee to make sure they didn’t let Minister Naughten indefinitely delay the national deposit and return scheme. As a result, the Committee voted seven to five against the Minister’s amendment. However, the Minister is now threatening to block the whole Waste Reduction Bill by refusing to issue a money order, potentially scuppering not only the deposit and return scheme but also a proposed ban on plastic straws and cutlery and the Minister’s own idea of a levy on disposable coffee cups.

Commenting on the campaign response, Head of Communications for Friends of the Earth, Dr. Cara Augustenborg, elaborated:

We’re amazed at how many people across the country backed this campaign to send Keep Cups to their TDs to support the Waste Reduction Bill. The response to our appeal is evidence of how strong the public sentiment is to tackle plastic pollution, particularly through establishment of a national Deposit-and-Return scheme, which is now threatened by Minister Naughten. Today, we’ve created an opportunity for people to directly express their concerns on this issue to their TDs while also putting a practical solution to plastic pollution directly in their TDs’ hands by giving them a Keep Cup.”

Friends of the Earth’s supporters will present Keep Cups directly to TDs at Buswells today along with a new factsheet debunking “6 Common Myths” about the proposed Deposit Refund Scheme, and a detailed briefing on the Waste Bill.

Oisin Coghlan, Director of Friends of the Earth, explained:

 It's almost a year since the Waste Reduction Bill passed its first big vote in the Dáil. Today, our supporters will make sure every TD knows that their constituents want this Bill to progress without further delay and ask them to press the Minister to let the Bill proceed to Third Stage. We hope Minister Naughten won’t pass this opportunity by to let Ireland lead in solving plastic pollution and leave a positive legacy on the landscape of Ireland.

ENDS

Notes:

[1] TDs are invited to Buswells hotel from 12:30-14:00 on June 13, 2018 to receive their Keep Cups from supporters along with a briefing on the Deposit-and-Return scheme. The new factsheet on the deposit refund scheme is here: http://bit.ly/DRSfactcheet. The detailed briefing on the Waste Reduction Bill is here: http://bit.ly/WRBbriefing

[2] The campaign appeal is here: https://www.foe.ie/blog/2018/05/30/KeepCups4TDs/

[3] https://www.irishtimes.com/news/environment/calls-for-introduction-of-bottle-deposit-scheme-increase-1.3444279

[4] Oireachtas testimony of Mindy O'Brien (VOICE) https://webarchive.oireachtas.ie/parliament/media/committees/budgetaryoversight/opening-statement---voice-ireland.pdf

[5] The Oireachtas Committtee report concluding the Bill should proceed to Third Stage is here: http://bit.ly/Oir280518

 

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