Archive for August, 2016

Have we got the bottle? The case for deposits on drinks containers

Bottle deposits are in the news. CPRE’s President spoke up for them in last week’s Mail on Sunday; the Association for the Protection of Rural Scotland has been running a tremendous campaign for a Scottish deposit scheme, Have you got the bottle?; and the  anniversary of the bag charge has shown that nudging people towards doing the right thing really does work.

Here is my column for September’s Countryman magazine, available in all good newsagents.

I often write quite gloomy columns for the Countryman, so it is good to be able to record an unequivocal success. It is a year since major retailers in England were required to charge 5p for single use plastic carrier bags and in that time six billion fewer bags have been issued. Yes, six billion, an 85% reduction.

This has had a big impact on litter and pollution (plastic bags take hundreds of years to degrade); it has saved wildlife (the RSPCA used to receive 7,000 litter-related calls a year); and it has raised some £29 million for ‘good causes’ (though more of this money should go towards tackling our national litter problem). Continue reading ‘Have we got the bottle? The case for deposits on drinks containers’