Plastic pollution to be tackled by coast path water refills

Media caption,

Hannah Blythyn hopes more communities and firms will make free drinking water available

Walkers on the Wales Coastal Path will be alerted to places offering free drinking water under a plan to tackle plastic waste.

The 870-mile route has been chosen for the first stage in a drive to make Wales a "refill nation".

Towns, villages and traders will be urged to join in, with refill points identified by stickers and an app.

Environment Minister Hannah Blythyn said plastic waste had a "devastating" effect on the marine environment.

Communities and businesses with free drinking water available will be invited to take part in the scheme over the next twelve months.

"Wales is the first country in the world to have a dedicated footpath that stretches the entire coastline," Ms Blythyn said.

"We as a government are very much looking forward to working with the communities along these 870 glorious miles to curb the use of single use plastic."

Image source, PA
Image caption,
People will be given more information on where to refill their bottles

Clare Pillman, chief executive of Natural Resources Wales - which manages the path - added: "Taking steps to eliminate avoidable waste will ensure that we manage our limited resources in a better way, which is good for the people, economy and environment of Wales."

In February, Llantwit Major in the Vale of Glamorgan became the first town in Wales to sign up to Refill, a drinking water promotional scheme launched in Bristol in 2015 which has since spread to more than a dozen English cities. towns and counties.

Meanwhile, Ms Blythyn said plastic recycling would be made the priority of a previously announced £6.5m Circular Economy capital investment fund, set up to help small businesses re-use resources rather than burn or bury them.

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