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Do you think a plastic bottle deposit scheme could work in the UK? How will this save me money?

Do you think a plastic bottle deposit scheme could work in the UK? How will this save me money?

Basically, everyone gets charged ~15p extra for each plastic bottled / canned drink etc they buy, then if the container is placed into a recycling machine the 15p is given back, this scheme is potentially coming to the UK soon, subject to consultation the Environment Secretary Michael Gove has confirmed today.

Who pays?

It’s not decided yet but we hope it’s the drinks companies on the proviso that if they join the system they get a reduced tax rate. Could it work?

Proof it can work (Norway Video):

In total 40 countries worldwide – including Germany, Sweden and Israel – and 21 US states have some kind of deposit return scheme for plastic bottles, from what we’ve seen numbers o

The UK Government in March announced they were going into consultation phase of reintroducing such a scheme in the UK.

Germany charges the equivalent of 22p and has seen a 97% recycling rate, currently (December 2017) only 43% of UK plastic bottles are recycled 1.

How does this give me more money in my pocket?

  • Lower cost to produce new bottles, in theory, could reduce costs
  • Cleaner streets, roads etc = less council tax spent on cleaning up
  • Extends the length of time taxpayer-funded landfills can operate (therefore reducing costs)
  • Collecting free money as you walk around your neighbourhoods

What happens to the money left over from those that simply chuck the bottles in the bin?

It goes to fund the scheme or is added as profits back to the drink companies.

What do the drink companies think?

Coca-Cola UK told the Independent: “We have embarked on a major review of our sustainable packaging strategy to understand what role we can play in unlocking the full potential of a circular economy in Great Britain.”


Do you think a plastic bottle deposit scheme could work in the UK?

Where can I learn more?

Read more on this Wikipedia articleon this BBC article or this .Gov article.

  1. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/22/make-supermarkets-and-drinks-firms-pay-for-plastic-recycling-say-mps

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  1. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/22/make-supermarkets-and-drinks-firms-pay-for-plastic-recycling-say-mps
  2. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/dec/22/make-supermarkets-and-drinks-firms-pay-for-plastic-recycling-say-mps