Brummies will be made to ditch disposable plastic coffee cups, drinking straws and other single use plastics under a proposal being put before city councillors next week.
Opposition Lib Dem councillors have drawn up a nine-point plan to make Birmingham a single-use plastic free city in a bid to help the environment and reduce waste.
They would start with council-run canteens, cafes and events and push for private businesses and other organisations to follow.
Proposals include cutting the sale of disposable cups and bottles, cutlery and drinking straws and encouraging more customers to bring their own bags and containers to markets and shops.
Street food and fast food sellers at council run public events could also have a clause in their contracts requiring them to provide re-usable containers.
A motion tabled by Lib Dem councillors Baber Baz (Yardley West and Stechford) and Jon Hunt (Perry Barr) will be debated and voted on by the full council on Tuesday, September 11.
It states: “This council is alarmed at the growing evidence of the impact of disposable plastic items on the world’s oceans, fish supplies and the litter on the streets and in the hedgerows of Birmingham.
“The council notes and welcomes the success of plastic bag charging policies introduced by national governments. It calls for action at a city level so Birmingham makes a significant contribution to reducing disposal of plastics and cleaning up the environment.”
Disturbing scenes of the impact of plastic waste on ocean wildlife on the BBC's Blue Planet II series has pushed the issue to the top of the political agenda. The introduction of the carrier bag charge has also been a success suggesting that similar measures targeting disposable plastic cups and straws could also have a major impact in cutting waste.
The Lib Dems proposal urges the council to set out detailed plans to move towards a ‘single-use plastic free city’ by the end of 2019.
Further proposals include no sale of single-use bottles, cups and cutlery from canteens and cafes in council buildings as well as at outdoor festivals and events in council parks.
It calls for free water fountains to be provided in council building reception areas.
And wants to actively promote the use of re-fillable cups and bottles by private shops and businesses in Birmingham.
The ruling Labour group will respond at the council meeting next week.
While the Lib Dem motion is unlikely to be adopted wholesale by the Labour leadership sources say that they are open to many of the proposals.
They suggest that a compromise motion could be agreed and be turned into council policy.
The Government is also considering introducing a ban on plastic straws, coffee stirrers and cotton buds. McDonald's has already started replacing plastic straws with strong paper ones which can be recycled. Chains such as Starbucks, JD Wetherspoon and IKEA have also taken steps to cut use.