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Public consultation launched on deposit return in Scotland

The Scottish Government has today (Wednesday 27 June, 2018) opened a public consultation on deposit return for Scotland.

Deposit return is a simple scheme in which customers pay a small deposit when they buy drinks in, for example, a bottle or a can, and then get the deposit back when they return the empty container for recycling.

The public consultation, which is available on the Scottish Government website, asks people for their thoughts on how a deposit return scheme for Scotland should work.

It includes choices such as what types of materials or products will have a deposit on them, how much the deposit should be, and where customers can get the deposit back.

Zero Waste Scotland has prepared four examples of how different choices on Scotland’s deposit return scheme could work together. These are contained within the consultation document.

The examples demonstrate how different choices on a deposit return scheme could work together. They are there to help people understand how a scheme could work, and make an informed choice about what they would prefer a scheme to look like.

Iain Gulland, Chief Executive, Zero Waste Scotland, said:

“Scotland’s planned deposit return scheme is a landmark in the nation’s circular economy journey, with the potential to drive inward investment and create jobs in Scotland at the same time as improving recycling and reducing litter.

“Zero Waste Scotland has consulted with hundreds of organisations on deposit return to date – from retailers and manufacturers to councils and community groups – and we are delighted to see options progress to public consultation stage.

“I would encourage everyone to have their say on what Scotland’s deposit return scheme should look like, and how it should work, by responding to the consultation. By doing so you’ll be helping to shape the best possible deposit return scheme for Scotland.”

Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham said:

“Publishing these options for a deposit return scheme is a significant step forward in our work to tackle plastic pollution and is another demonstration of our leadership on developing a circular economy. 

“The consultation sets out that deposit return is not only an effective way of increasing recycling rates and preventing drinks containers from ending up as litter, but it is also an economic opportunity.

“A deposit return scheme will provide a new secure source of high quality material which will create opportunities to develop our recycling infrastructure in Scotland and create jobs. This will also improve the availability of recycled material for use in the production of bottles and cans in future.

“I would encourage everyone with an interest to provide their views on how this scheme can meet Scotland’s needs and help us tackle our throwaway culture.”

To find out more about the consultation, and about deposit return schemes, visit www.zerowastescotland.org.uk/deposit-return-scheme

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