Scotland has become the first nation in the UK to commit to a deposit return system for bottles and cans. This system will include PET plastic bottles (for example fizzy drinks and water bottles), glass bottles and steel/aluminium drinks cans. All drinks that come in those container types will be included, both soft drinks and alcoholic. Prices for drinks in those types of containers will include a deposit of 20p per container. The scheme aims to capture 90% of drinks containers for recycling within three years.
How would it work in practice? Easy. You pay a small deposit when you buy cans and bottles, and get it back when you return them.Find out more about deposit return
And could it work here? Of course. Deposit return works reliably around the world, and there's no reason Scotland can't be next.Read the international evidence
If we want to reduce litter and clean up Scotland, nothing else comes even close.
Less litter for Scottish councils to pick up means cost savings for local taxpayers.
When people get money back for recycling, it changes attitudes and changes behaviour.
Collecting empty packaging more efficiently provides better materials for industry.
There will be more good quality jobs in manufacturing as well as in recycling.
Litter and landfill aren't just wasteful, they're bad for the planet.
In May 2019, the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform announced that Scotland will have a deposit return system for all bottles and cans made from PET plastic, metal, and glass. There will be a 20 pence deposit on each of these items, and customers will get their money back when they return their empty to any shop that sells drinks. The Scottish Government intend the system to start in April 2021.Read on >
“Two and a half years ago we were watching Chris Packham on TV and the river Clyde was actually featured, with people collecting bottles and cans. We saw some Barr’s Irn-Bru bottles bobbing up and down, and we thought to ourselves – that potentially could have come from one of our vending machines so therefore we are part of the problem. Let’s become part of the solution.
Having a deposit return system will allow us to deal with materials properly.”Read on >