A report has found more than eight billion drinks containers were dumped in rivers or seas, sent to landfill or not recycled in the UK in one year. The research was conducted by Greenpeace, CPRE and environment group Reloop, which found that in 2019, 40 percent of these drink containers were plastic bottles, just under a third were cans and 18 percent were glass.
It was revealed that each person throws away 126 drink containers a year in the UK alone. Environment groups are trying to launch a deposit return scheme which will create a financial incentive for people to return their bottles and cans in the form of a cash deposit.
The scourge of waste was highlighted by The Mail with Turn the Tide on Plastic campaign, which led to government backing calls for a deposit return scheme.
Samantha Harding, Executive Director of Reloop while talking to Daily Mail, said that the large scale of wasted containers in the UK should provide clarity for the government as they prepare to consult for a final time on the confirmed deposit return system. She addedthat they must focus on eliminating wastage by introducing legislation and regulation allowing for the best possible design which prioritises convenience for consumers and sets an effective deposit level. Their analysis shows thatthere’s no time to waste despite some sectors calling for delays to the crucial policy.
In Germany, only 21 drink containers are trashed per person each year as a deposit return scheme has operated there for decades.
Sam Chetan-Welsh, Political campaigner for Greenpeace, tells Daily Mail that figures show delay to the deposit return scheme results in billions more bottles being dumped or burned.Hence, the government must deliver an ‘all-in’ deposit return scheme by 2023,including drinks packaging of all sizes and made from all materials.
He addedwhile other countries have had successful systems operating for years, UK government delays deposit return, raising serious questions about their claims of being a ‘world leader’ on plastic pollution.
Tom Fyans, Director of Campaigns and Policy at CPRE, notedlitter in their countryside harms wildlife and nature, costing taxpayers millions of pounds in clean-up costs each year. He added that the small deposit acts as a financial incentive, putting rubbish where it belongs and valuable material being recycled.
Keywords- study, UK, deposit return scheme, Greenpeace, CPRE, Samantha Harding, Reloop, Sam-Chetan Welsh, Tom Fyans, drinks container