Tuesday, 9 July 2019

Questions (200)

Denis Naughten

Question:

200. Deputy Denis Naughten asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform if his Department has ceased the purchase and use of single-use plastics; the public bodies and agencies under his remit to which he has issued an instruction to cease the purchase and use of single-use plastics; when the instruction issued; the bodies which have confirmed that they no longer purchase and use single-use plastics, respectively; the bodies which have not provided such confirmation to date; when they will confirm; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [29990/19]

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Written answers (Question to Public)

Prior to the announcement by the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment in January 2019 that “no government department or agency will buy single-use plastic cups, cutlery or straws for use within their offices”, the Departments of Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform – through their shared Facilities Management Unit (FMU) – had already begun eliminating such plastics.  In line with the announcement on Single-Use Plastics, the FMU confirms that no Single-Use Plastics have been purchased since January 2019.  It retains an existing inventory of non single-use, re-useable and recyclable plastic cups for water in the main reception and selected areas for external visitors to the Department.

The instruction relating to Single-Use Plastics issued to the bodies under the aegis of the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform on 14 March 2019.  All of the bodies under the aegis of the Department (the Office of Public Works, the National Shared Services Office, the Public Appointments Service, the Office of the Ombudsman, the National Lottery Regulator, the State Laboratory, the Institute of Public Administration and the Economic and Social Research Institute) have confirmed that they are no longer purchasing single-use plastics.  One organisation has advised that it still has some single-use plastics in stock but this is almost exhausted.