Taxpayers are facing a multi-million-pound bill to store 100,000 tons of waste paper and cardboard as the British recycling industry plunges into crisis.This won’t come as any surprise to people who read blogs, of course – Tim Worstall in particular has been pointing this out for months.
Rubbish carefully sorted by householders is piling up in vast warehouses as the market for waste paper collapses, and experts have warned that the mountain of garbage could double in the next three months.
But it was the tacked-on bit at the end of the report that caught my eye:
Gordon Brown still uses plastic carrier bags for his weekly supermarket shop despite pledging to eliminate them.Now, I’m as happy as anyone else to give Brown a kicking, but notice that the bags come from the supermarket – he doesn’t really have any choice in the matter. It’s not like he’s skipping down to Sainsburys with the little woman, ordering a ton of groceries, and then asking for a plastic bag with each item, is it...?
The Prime Minister has now revealed in an interview that he and his wife Sarah often order through supermarket websites and receive ‘a lot of unnecessary packaging and plastic bags’.
Last year Mr Brown announced plans to wipe out the 13billion plastic bags given out by Britain’s shops each year, ordering supermarkets to cut the number they give away from 9.1billion to 3.9billion by the spring.
But that won’t stop the other side having a pointless whine about it:
Greg Barker, Shadow Minister for Climate Change, said: ‘It appears that all the noise Gordon Brown was making last year was just for short-term headlines.Such as...? If he tried to pass a law ensuring that supermarket deliveries were forbidden to use plastic bags, you’d be (quite rightly) howling from the rooftops over his ‘authoritarian streak’.
‘It’s a shame that he doesn’t do more to make it easier for everybody to use fewer plastic bags and waste less.’
Can we get away from this pointless fetishism over things like plastic carrier bags, and argue political points like grown ups..?