Postive step by industry to tackle litter

We welcome the announcement made by Coca Cola on 21 February that they believe the time is right to trial new interventions to tackle litter and littering behaviour such as a well-designed deposit scheme for drinks containers in Scotland.

We have taken a pragmatic position on the possible introduction of a deposit return scheme since the original proposal was published in 2015 and are keen to ensure that whatever solution is put in place delivers the best possible outcomes for Scotland.

We believe that if developed and implemented effectively, with the full involvement of all stakeholders, and supported by robust monitoring and evaluation to ensure its effectiveness, such a scheme could form an important element of the National Litter Strategy for Scotland.

However, while we recognise that there are potential benefits of a deposit scheme, we do not believe this alone will address Scotland’s wider litter challenge.  There is no evidence to suggest it will lead to a decrease in the littering of items such as food on the go packaging, cigarettes, coffee cups, chewing gum, confectionary wrappers and drinks cartons.

Derek Robertson, Chief Executive of Keep Scotland Beautiful, said:  The announcement by Coca Cola is a positive step in the right direction and I am pleased that they have acknowledged the need for new, innovative solutions to tackle litter and littering behaviour.  However, it is clear that a deposit scheme won’t be the silver bullet that solves Scotland’s litter problem.

"We should also not underestimate the hard work and challenges that that lie ahead if such a scheme is to be implemented in Scotland.  It is vital that all stakeholders are fully engaged in the design and development of any scheme to ensure delivers for Scotland."

22 February 2017

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