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Seaside bars pledge to reduce use of plastic
Seaside restaurants and bars on the Belgian coast have pledged to limit their use of plastic straws, utensils and cups this summer in a new initiative announced by Belgium's minister for the North Sea, Philippe De Backer.
Clean-up and awareness campaigns will also be held over the summer season in an attempt to make the Belgian coast a little more friendly to the North Sea.
"Today, it is no longer responsible to use plastic utensils for only a few seconds while this waste will take a century to decompose," De Backer told RTBF.
According to scientists, there are an average of 3,975 identifiable pieces of floating waste per square kilometre in the North Sea, of which 96% is plastic. The worldwide average is 13,000.
Among other measures to reduce marine pollution, last May the European Commission announced a ban on a variety of products containing plastic that have inexpensive alternatives.