Mid Scotland and Fife MSP Alex Rowley is supporting growing calls for a deposit return scheme to be introduced for drinks containers as part of a campaign to reduce litter across Scotland.
Nearly 40 countries and regions including Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Norway, Australia, Israel, USA, and Canada all currently have some form of a deposit return system whereby money is usually given back upon returning drinks cans and bottles.
The Mid Scotland and Fife MSP visited a local beach in the region to highlight how quickly littered bottles and cans can be found.
Speaking on the issue Mr Rowley said:
“We are privileged to have some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, and it is a shame to see this spoiled by litter on our beaches and in our countryside. I am supportive of any moves that can drive down the amount of litter across Scotland.
“It is also staggering that research shows that by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans so it is for every country to do something about it.
“I am writing to the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform to both highlight the issue and also to ask that she support moves towards a deposit return scheme for Scotland. I am also asking what work has previously been undertaken by the Scottish Government on this important issue and what would be the process for moving this matter forward.
“I welcome the news that the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee have established a sub-group to look into the issue, and I hope that the Cabinet Secretary takes their recommendations on-board once they report their findings in the Summer.
“It is vital that we look after our environment, and I hope that we can eventually see a Scotland where litter is an issue of the past. I think a deposit return scheme would be a step in the right direction to cleaning up Scotland.”
Photo shows Alex Rowley picking up plastic and cans on a Fife beach this weekend