Scottish Daily Mail

Queen’s war on plastic

New Buckingham Palace rules mean straws are out and glass bottles are in

- By Emily Kent Smith and Ben Spencer

THE Queen is cracking down on plastic, with palace staff told to ditch straws, eat from china plates and drink from glass bottles.

Environmen­tally friendly strategies have been put in place at Buckingham Palace as a spokesman told of a ‘strong desire’ to tackle the issue of plastic in royal residences.

Plastic bottles will no longer be seen in staff canteens or meeting rooms and plastic straws will also be phased out at public cafes.

Packaging for takeaway food must now be compostabl­e or biodegrada­ble, and cardboard boxes used to shift materials between sites will be re-used many times to avoid waste.

The move comes after the Daily Mail launched its Turn The Tide On Plastic campaign. The Queen is thought to have taken a personal interest in plastic since working on a documentar­y about wildlife conservati­on with Sir David Attenborou­gh.

The pair, both 91, were pictured laughing and joking last year as they discussed the Queen’s Commonweal­th Canopy project – which will implement forested parks across the 52 countries.

And Prince Charles, , who regularly speaks about the scourge of plastic, told a conference last month: ‘The nightmare result of eight million tons of plastic entering the ocean every year is set to get worse rather than better. We cannot allow this to continue.’

To raise awareness among staff, Buckingham Palace employees are sent a ‘green newsletter’ reminding them to reduce waste.

The eco-friendly rules are understood to have been in place for some time at Clarence House.

Between 2016 and last year, Buckingham Palace made a 5.1 per cent reduction in waste, reports show. Kensington Palace has also been taking measures to cut the amount it throws away.

The moves mean companies applying for royal warrants will need to comply with environmen­tal criteria.

Richard Harrington, of the Marine Conservati­on Society, said: ‘This sets a great example. It will also incentivis­e businesses to reduce the amount of plastic they routinely use.’

Meanwhile, the Scottish Government is drawing up plans to ban plastic straws.

Environmen­t Secretary Roseanna Cunningham revealed that legislatio­n banning the manufactur­e and sale of straws could be in place by next year. The Government has also committed to introduce a bottle deposit scheme and is also bringing in a ban on plastic-stemmed cotton buds.

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