22 November 2021

Scotland delays deposit returns, adds incineration chair

The next steps in creating a circular economy in Scotland include the appointment of IOM3 CEO Dr Colin Church as the independent chair of the review into the role of incineration in the waste hierarchy in Scotland.

plastic water bottle
© Jonathan Cooper/Unsplash

To support the review, which forms part of the cooperation deal with the Scottish Green Party, Scottish Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater announced that planning authorities must now notify Scottish Ministers of any applications or decisions involving incineration facilities, until the end of the review period.

Over £7mln has been awarded to seven local authorities to increase recycling, while preparing for future developments, including Scotland’s Deposit Return Scheme.

The Minister provided an update on the delivery of the scheme, noting the challenges posed by Brexit, the pandemic, and a lack of clarity from UK Government on the VAT treatment of deposits.

She said, ‘We are committed to introducing the UK’s first deposit return scheme, helping to increase recycling, reduce littering, and meet our climate targets. While the scheme has been impacted by Brexit and a global pandemic, we are working intensively with Circularity Scotland and industry to make sure it is delivered effectively.’ The timeline remains unclear.