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EU considers to ban plastic bags

The European Union (EU) Commission has launched a public consultation to decide on the best possible measure to reduce the use of plastic bags across Europe.

The Commission is considering either to impose a tax or a ban on plastic bags as it tries to cut down on their use and fight pollution.

The EU executive said it also wants to gather opinions on increasing the visibility of biodegradable packaging products and boosting the biodegradability requirements for packaging.

According to reports, each person in the 27-country EU uses on average 500 plastic carrier bags per year. In 2008, a total of 3.4 million tonnes of plastic bags, weighing the same as 2 million cars, were produced in Europe.

The Commission said the bags often goes in the sea and takes hundred of years to decompose. The body also said that nearly 250 billion plastic particles weighing a total 500 tonnes pollute the Mediterranean Sea, threatening sea life which can suffocate eating them.

In some EU states, plastic bags are banned from stores or consumers must pay for them in supermarket lines.