Plastic in the sea: Italy also bans production of single-use products


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Italy also implements the European SUP – Single Use Plastics directive enacted in 2019 that bans the production of particular single-use plastic products.

Italy is also taking the field against the plastic that infests our seas. Last May 31, 2019, the European Commission had issued a newSUP – Single Use Plastics – directive banning the production of particular single-use plastic products, and our country has finally transposed this law into our national law. The stop for the time being is limited to specific products for which there are already affordable alternatives on the market: cotton swabs, cutlery, plates, straws, beverage stirrers, balloon rods, as well as cups, expanded polystyrene food and beverage containers, and all degradable plastic products. All of these de facto products can no longer be placed on the EU market.

For other single-use plastic products, such as fishing gear and wet wipes, for example, the new European directive imposes labeling requirements, extended producer responsibility schemes, awareness campaigns, and design specifications aimed at limiting their use, reducing their consumption, and preventing their release into the environment.

Disposable plastic


Italy and other European states will also have to ensure that certain single-use plastic products placed on the market carry a marking on the product or its packaging designed to inform consumers of the presence of plastic in the product and the appropriate method of disposing of the waste, avoiding dispersal in the environment. This requirement applies to products such as sanitary napkins and tampons and tampon applicators; wet wipes for personal hygiene and household use; tobacco products with filters and filters marketed in combination with tobacco products; and beverage cups.

The goal of the new European SUP – Single Use Plastics directive is loud and clear, namely to prevent and reduce the impact of certain plastic products on the environment, particularly the marine environment, and human health, and to promote the transition to a circular economy with sustainable business models, products and materials.

More than 80 percent of marine litter is in fact plastic, which accumulates in the seas, oceans and beaches of Europe and around the world. Residues that are dangerous to both marine life and biodiversity, as they are found in species such as sea turtles, seals, whales, birds, as well as in fish and shellfish that are part of the human food chain.

The new bans, in the European Commission’s vision, will encourage the production and use of sustainable alternatives to single-use plastic, as well as raise awareness of the risks of plastic pollution of our seas and its negative impact on our economy, tourism, fishing and shipping.


The Sailing Newspaper together with Barche a Motore magazine and Medplastic, the association created in 2018 to safeguard the Mediterranean, is launching the “Trash Hunters” campaign for this summer 2021 and invites you all to become plastic hunters.

How? Very easy, when you are at sea sailing along coasts and among archipelagos or while anchored at anchor in a bay or moored in a harbor or even when you are simply enjoying a day at the beach, whenever you see one or more floating plastic waste pick it up, take a selfie with the “catch” and post it on Instagram in Direct Message to @giornaledellavela and @barcheamotore or post it on your profile by tagging @giornaledellavela and @barcheamotore or using the hashtag #medplastic2021. In addition to the generic description of your “prey,” it is very important in your reports to add the exact geographic location of the find and your first and last name.




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