SHOPPERS will be slapped with a £1billion plastic bag tax from today as the new 10p charge comes in.
The current levy will be doubled from 5p to 10p and expanded to all shops in England to put people off buying them, and stop them ending up in landfill.
At the moment they only apply to bigger supermarkets and giant chains.
Ministers are beefing up Britain’s efforts as it gears up to host the COP26 climate summit in November.
But the Taxpayer’s Alliance warn today that the green measure will cost consumers a whopping £1billion over the next decade – around £45 per household.
They say that hidden costs including more VAT, substitute bags for life, and paper bags will all add up to a £1billion cost for consumers in the next ten years.
Danielle Boxall, media campaign manager at the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said last night: “While the charge has helped cut down the use of carrier bags, it’s still shoppers paying the price.
“Moving on from plastic bags will bring many benefits, but politicians cannot pretend this hasn’t hiked the cost of living for hard-pressed households.”
The scheme is set to raise more than £300million, which will be dished out to charities, volunteers and eco-projects.
The charge has been hugely successful, slashing the amount of plastic bags Brits use by 95 per cent.
The average household used to use around 140 single-use bags a year, but now takes home around four.
Eco-warriors hope that extending the charge to all shops, including smaller corner ones, will decrease it by another 70 – 80 per cent in small firms.
Environment Minister Rebecca Pow said last night: “Everyone wants to play their part in reducing the scourge of plastic waste that blights our environment and oceans.