People in England will soon have to pay a deposit when they buy drinks bottles and cans in a bid to boost recycling and cut waste. The deposit will increase prices – but consumers will get the money back if they return the container. The scheme is expected to cover single-use glass and plastic bottles, and steel and aluminium cans. Full details are subject to consultation and yet to be decided, including how big the deposit will be. But costs in similar schemes elsewhere range from 22p in Germany and 8p in Sweden. “We have already banned harmful microbeads and cut plastic bag use, and now we want to take action on plastic bottles to help clean up our oceans,” he said. “We need to see a change in attitudes and behaviour. And the evidence shows that reward and return schemes are a powerful agent of change.” UK consumers use around 13 billion plastic drinks bottles a year but more than three billion are not recycled. Scotland has already announced plans for a deposit return scheme and Wales has launched a study to consider it. Similar schemes in northern Europe have led to a big increase in the amount of plastic recycled. The announcement has been welcomed by environmental campaigners, but industry may be worried about the price tag. It may be asked to pick up the bill for the deposit return scheme. Currently plastics producers pay just 10% of the cost of recycling packaging.  Councils will also be anxious to ensure that kerbside collecting is not undercut when details are confirmed. Samantha Harding, from the Campaign to Protect Rural England, said: “This is a brilliant and significant decision by Michael Gove.  “I am thrilled that we will finally see the many benefits a deposit system will bring to England, not least the absence of ugly drinks containers in our beautiful countryside.

No Comments

Leave a Comment