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Annual bicycle race, Tour de France, has been slammed for generating an ‘avalanche of plastic‘ – with environmentalists dubbing the event the ‘Tour de Plastic’.
Organizers have predicted that by the end of the race, July 28, 15 million ‘freebies’ – items such as food, drinks, merchandise, and keyrings – will have been ‘tossed to the crowds’.
An ‘ecological emergency’
According to Reuters, French Politician, Francois-Michel Lambert, said: “The giving away of ‘goodies’ has to be totally rethought. The ecological emergency demands action.”
While Julian Kirby, Campaigner at Friends of the Earth, told The Independent: “Sport can have such a positive impact but it’s such a shame to see how much plastic tat is coming alongside big events such as le Tour.
“Organizers really must crackdown on the pollution footprint that comes from plastic freebies.
Director of Tour de France, Christian Prudhomme, has responded to criticism vowing to reduce plastic – while a spokesperson for the event added: “The reduction of single-use plastics is at the heart of our fight against waste.
Last year, the EU Parliament voted to ban a range of single-use plastic items by 2021 in a race to save the oceans.
The Union-wide ban would cover plastic cutlery, plates, cotton buds, straws, drink-stirrers, and balloon sticks – which make up 70 percent of marine litter.