British Glass raises concerns about increased plastic packaging as a result of a Deposit Return Scheme

British Glass raises concerns about increased plastic packaging as a result of a Deposit Return Scheme

March 18, 2021
Technical Director Dr Nick Kirk has spoken at the Environmental Audit Committee warning of the consequences of including glass in the proposed Deposit Return Scheme

Speaking in front of a parliamentary committee, British Glass has today raised concerns that the inclusion of glass beverage packaging in the governments proposed Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) would lead to an increase in plastic packaging and limit the sector’s ability to recycle glass back into bottles and jars. 

Oral evidence was today provided to the Environmental Audit Committee’s inquiry ‘Next steps for deposit return schemes’.

Speaking after giving evidence to the Committee, British Glass’ Technical Director Dr Nick Kirk said:

“We welcome the Environmental Audit Committee’s inquiry at the pivotal moment for deciding how we collect, manage and recycle our waste and resources for generations to come.

“British Glass does not oppose the introduction of a deposit return scheme but put simply it is the wrong solution for glass beverage packaging. It would split glass food and beverage packaging into two waste streams, to the detriment of both.

"It risks increasing emissions in the glass sector and reducing the amount of recycled material available to be used again in the manufacture glass bottles and jars. And, as international evidence has shown, it could well lead to more, not less, plastic packaging on the market.  

“We already have a solution to improving glass recycling, and it’s at our doorsteps. Instead of including glass packaging in a damaging and expensive DRS, we want to see more glass collected through improved household collections under extended producer responsibility, enhanced by consistent collections. Only this will create a truly circular economy for glass packaging.”