Legislation will improve air and water quality, tackle waste, increase recycling, halt the decline of species, and improve our natural environment.
Through the Environment Act, we will clean up the country’s air, restore natural habitats, increase biodiversity, reduce waste and make better use of our resources.
It will help us transition to a more circular economy, incentivising people to recycle more, encouraging businesses to create sustainable packaging, making household recycling easier and stopping the export of polluting plastic waste to developing countries.
These changes will be driven by new legally binding environmental targets, and enforced by a new, independent Office for Environmental Protection (OEP) which will hold government and public bodies to account on their environmental obligations.
Environment Secretary George Eustice said:
“The Environment Act will deliver the most ambitious environmental programme of any country on earth.
It will halt the decline of species by 2030, clean up our air and protect the health of our rivers, reform the way in which we deal with waste and tackle deforestation overseas.
We are setting an example for the rest of the world to follow.”
Furthermore, the Environmental Act will extend producer responsibility to make producers pay for 100% of the cost of disposal of products, starting with plastic packaging.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted:
“The Environment Act will deliver the most ambitious environmental programme of any country on earth. It will clean up our air and protect our rivers. Alongside our net zero target, we’re setting an example for the rest of the world to follow at @COP26.”