THE council in the Wee County will "lead by example" in reducing single-use plastic waste after a motion was endorsed by elected members last week.

Brought forward by Conservative Councillor Darren Lee, the motion called on the Clackmannanshire local authority to recognise "the devastating impact plastic pollution is having on our environment".

Backed unanimously in all corners, the drive directs the council to "begin by transitioning away from single-use plastics".

Speaking to the Advertiser, Cllr Lee highlighted the local authority uses around 172,000 single-use plastic items a year, including some 52,000 cups.

He explained the council should be a leader in zero waste not just around the county, but in the whole of Scotland.

Cllr Lee said: "You only need to look around our parks and green spaces to see the damaging effect of single-use plastics on our environment.

"We should be seeking to reduce our own contribution to the devastating impact of plastic pollution, embrace new technologies and change our throw away cultures.

"It is my hope that this motion will have a positive effect on our local environment long term, save the local authority money and reduce the strain on the army of volunteers who go out and tackle the mountains of litter that accumulate in the community each and every year."

Not only is Cllr Lee hoping to change things around at the council itself, the representative is looking to encourage others to do the same, especially in the third sector and among community groups, but also in the household.

The West Ward representative said: "Reusable options are becoming more widely available; stainless steel straws, cloth nappies and wipes, and fabric shopping bags to name just a few.

"Not to mention the obvious use of ceramic mugs, stainless steel cutlery and proactive deposit return schemes that could easily be incorporated into businesses and the local authority.

"People can also make small changes at home, such as taking a reusable coffee cup or Thermos to work. Reusing bottles and even giving items a second life before they find their way to the bin.

"Businesses can continue to monitor their usage and waste whilst promoting alternatives to their staff and service users.

"Only through hard work and due diligence are we going to break away from the throw away culture we have become accustomed to."

He acknowledges changing attitudes "will be no easy task" and that reusable alternatives can be more expensive to begin with.

But the councillor added: "However, in the longer term the positive effects can be felt in both the environment and the pocket.

"That's the very aim of this motion, to acknowledge the problem and work to cut down on waste and reduce recycling costs whilst also saving money for constituents and the council long term."