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Majority of Scots believe glass should be included in deposit return scheme

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More than eight in 10 people agree it is right that glass is included in the deposit return scheme.

The recycling scheme will see people pay a 20p deposit when buying drinks in a plastic or glass bottle or a metal can and they will then get their money back when they return them to be recycled.

The Scottish Government scheme is expected to increase the recycling of glass bottles from around 65% at present to 90%.

A YouGov survey commissioned by Zero Waste Scotland found 85% of people questioned feel glass bottles should be in the scheme, while 8% said they should not and the remainder are unsure.

Jill Farrell, chief operating officer at Zero Waste Scotland, said: “The environmental evidence shows why Scotland is right to include glass in its deposit return scheme from day one.

“People in Scotland want glass to be included… as part of ambitious action to protect our environment. The carbon emissions savings make it clear that they are right.

“Every bottle recycled rather than sent to landfill means carbon savings. At a time of a climate emergency, this is an unmissable opportunity to cut tens of thousands of tonnes of carbon.”

Zero Waste Scotland calculates the inclusion of glass in the scheme will cut the country’s carbon emissions by 1.2 million tonnes over the next 25 years.

This makes up nearly a third (30%) of the total anticipated carbon savings of the scheme.

It is also estimated that the initiative could reduce the number of discarded plastic bottles by more than 11 million each year.

The Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) is expected to be up and running by the end of the current Scottish Parliament in 2021.

Scottish Green environment spokesman Mark Ruskell said: “I welcome the results of this survey which clearly shows the public back a wide-ranging scope for DRS.

“I agree that glass should be an obvious inclusion in the scheme, despite what corporate lobby groups are saying. We’ve seen numerous attempts by industry to derail DRS in recent months.

“I’ve seen the efficiency of how this is done in other countries, and there is no reason why Scotland should not match that level of ambition.

“Scotland can lead the way on creating a circular economy, but we can’t afford to wait for industry to come around to the idea. We need courage not capitulation.”

The survey of 1,019 adults living in Scotland was carried out last month.