Are you ready for the ten pence plastic bag charge?

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UK Prime Minister Theresa May is next week expected to unveil plans to bring in a compulsory charge of 10p for plastic bags in all shops.

The move, trailed in daily newspapers, is part of a raft of measures which aim to answer highly-publicised concern about the threat plastic - as for example in single-serve coffee cups - is said to pose.

Reports suggest the use of carrier bags has dramatically declined since the introduction of a five pence charge, and cash raised from this levy has been channelled into a variety of good causes.

Close to £60 million has been raised through existing plastic bag charges, according to data from the two thirds of retailers prepared to submit figures.

Should the new charge go ahead, as reports suggest seems highly likely. the cost of a heavier duty “bag for life” - typically 10 pence - could be doubled by retailers.

Plastic straws, cotton buds and plastic stirrers could potentially be in the frame for a ban, or a levy similar to that imposed on bags,

Meanwhile the idea of introducing a deposit return scheme for drink bottles and cans is said to be under consideration, in a bid to boost currently poor recycling rates.