Deposit returns to be a reality for Scotland

Date posted: 4 September 2017

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) welcomes the commitment to a bottle deposit return system made by Scottish Government, as reported by the Daily Mail and Sky News this morning.

Catherine Gemmell, Scotland Conservation Officer said: “As a founding partner in the Have You Got The Bottle campaign, we are absolutely thrilled with today‚Äôs announcement. We are extremely hopeful, having seen the thorough investigation of options for deposit return systems done by Scottish Government to date, that we’ll hear the First Minister give a green light for a full working Deposit Return System in Scotland. We see this as the simplest next step to help turn the tide on plastic, glass and metal drinks containers on our beaches. We hope that this will inspire similar systems throughout the UK.”

“For almost three decades our dedicated volunteers have taken part in our Beachwatch surveys, gathering evidence of the impact of ocean plastics and litter of all materials on the seas and coasts around Scotland and throughout the UK. In coastal countries with a working Deposit Return System in place, it has been shown to contribute to a measurable reduction in the numbers of bottles found on the beach. We want as many people as possible to take part in our Great British Beach Clean 2017 from 15-18th September and continue to gather the evidence needed to measure the scale of the problem and, we hope, in future the degree of success.”

Actions you can take

  1. Read our microbead ban position statement
  2. Learn about Deposit Return Systems
  3. Join the Plastic Challenge
  4. Find out more about nurdles
  5. NGO microbead briefing paper
  6. Join a beach clean
  7. Browse Scotland's Marine Atlas
  8. Find out more about Scottish Wildlife

Did you know?…

MCS established its Scotland office and programme in 2000 in Edinburgh

Over time, one plastic bottle bobbing along in the ocean can break down in to hundreds of tiny plastic pieces

To the shelf limits, Scotland has 61% of UK waters, of which 23% are now in existing or new ‘marine protected areas’