British Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond will launch a public consultation on using taxes to reduce plastic waste in his Spring Statement on Tuesday, local media reported.
The chancellor will call for evidence from industry, environmental protection groups and individuals on plans to tax single-use plastics, such as stirrers, cutlery and takeaway boxes, which are polluting the seas and lands.
"Single-use plastics waste is a scourge to our environment. From crisp packets to coffee cups, each year the UK (United Kingdom) produces millions of tons of waste which is neither recyclable nor biodegradable," said Hammond ahead of the upcoming Spring Statement, or "mini budget," in which he will update Parliament on economic policies.
Hammond will also unveil an innovation fund worth 20 million pounds (about 27.7 million U.S. dollars) to encourage businesses and universities to develop new technologies to cut plastic waste.
The fight against plastic waste came after British Prime Minister Theresa May's pledge in January to eradicate the country's avoidable plastic waste by 2042 as part of the government's 25-year environmental plan. Local media cited official data to report that Britain produces some 2.26 million tons of plastic packaging waste annually and recycles less than half of the total amount.