Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, says the nation’s new Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) will play a major part in reducing litter and creating a greener economy.
She made the comments while encouraging drinks producers to register for the scheme, which goes live on August 16.
Producers are required to register with DRS administrator Circularity Scotland.
The scheme is expected to cut littering by a third, reducing the amount spent by local authorities on litter clean up, and will increase recycling rates of single-use drinks containers from the current rate of approximately 50% towards 90%.
In a statement issued by the Scottish Government, Ms Sturgeon said: “Scotland’s deposit return scheme will be a major part of our efforts to reduce litter, cut emissions and build a greener, more circular economy.
“Good progress is being made by industry ahead of the scheme’s introduction on 16 August, and I am aware of the significant private investment that has already been made by many businesses to be ready for the scheme, and the many jobs that are being created to operate it.
“I would strongly encourage drinks producers to register with the scheme administrator, Circularity Scotland. This is a vital step to ensuring everyone who needs to be is compliant with the regulations and is the best way to make sure that their products can be sold without issue in Scotland.
“I also want to reassure drinks producers with concerns about the impact of the scheme. SEPA has made clear that they will take a proportionate approach to compliance. They will work with businesses to help them get ready – advice and guidance, not fines, will be the first step for any business that is clearly taking action but struggling to meet their obligations.
“The Scottish Government will continue to listen to the concerns of small producers and will consider if there is any further action we can take to support them ahead of the scheme going live.”