Chi Onwurah. MP for Newcastle Central is backing her Labour colleague’s Private Member’s Bill to prohibit the manufacture and sale of wet wipes containing plastic. Image from Chi Onwurah’s office. Used with permission.
“Its hard to believe but we use 11 billion wet wipes a year in the UK, but most of us are unaware that 90% of them contain plastic.
“Everyone should bin and not flush wet wipes, but either way they contain plastic which gets in the environment and kills wildlife.
“When the used wet wipes are then disposed of the plastic in them breaks down into microplastics, which can be ingested by animals in rivers and then by marine life, and can enter into our food chain as well as our water supplies.
“ As we all know the environmental damage caused by plastic waste is causing an ecological disaster with 100 million marine animals dying each year from plastic waste alone.”
Chi believes that most people want to do the right thing by cutting down on their use of plastic and is supporting the Bill so everyone who relies on the use of wet wipes can be sure they are not releasing plastic into the environment.
The Bill will be discussed in the House of Commons next week as world leaders are meeting for COP26 and Chi is keen to show that the UK can take serious action by banning plastics in wet wipes made and sold in Britain.
Chi points out not only is it possible to manufacture wet wipes without plastic, non-plastic alternatives are on the market already.
There are bamboo fibre wipes, plant based wipes, organic cotton wipes, and washable re-usable cloths.