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CPRE reaction to Scottish deposit return system

*These cans, bottles, cartons and pouches were collected by CPRE staff during a 30 minute litter pick. *These cans, bottles, cartons and pouches were collected by CPRE staff during a 30 minute litter pick.

The Scottish government has today announced that it will be introducing a deposit return system for glass, plastic and aluminium drinks containers of all sizes.

The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) welcomes this announcement and applauds the Scottish government on its leadership and ambition. The decision today from Scotland sets a path for the UK government to follow, as the consultation from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) on the design options for England’s deposit return system draws to a close.

CPRE urge the government to build on Scotland’s plans to tackle drinks container pollution and go one step further by ensuring that England gets an ‘all-in’ system that includes drinks cartons and pouches, as well as aluminium cans and glass and plastic bottles.

Samantha Harding, litter programme director at CPRE, said:

‘We wholeheartedly congratulate the Scottish government on making this landmark decision. By introducing a deposit return system for glass, plastic and metal drinks containers it has taken a significant step in tackling the problem of packaging pollution – one that has resulted in devastating consequences for our countryside and environment for far too long.

‘On this side of the border, we will be urging environment secretary Michael Gove to build on Scotland’s ambition and go one better, by making sure every drinks carton is also included within England’s deposit system.

‘Introducing a truly ‘all-in’ deposit system will not only boost recycle rates to close to 100%, but also make the producers of drinks packaging rightly liable for the cost of every piece of packaging they create. This will encourage them to use more recycled materials, which will reduce waste, slow down the depletion of natural resources and move us one step closer to the circular economy that our planet so desperately needs.’

The deposit return system consultation from Defra looks at two design options for a deposit return system in England, and will close on Monday 13 May.

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