Tuesday 25th November 2014
Scotland introduced a 5p charge on all single use plastic, paper and biodegradable bags in October 2014.
Many Scottish stores have since reported reductions in the number of carrier bags consumers are using, with some dropping as much as 90% according to The Scotsman and The Daily Record. Many retailers report customers bringing their own bags, including bags for life. Wales and Northern Ireland have seen great success in previous years not only with introducing bag charges but by using their own bags. Three years after introducing a charge, Wales are still seeing higher sales per store for bags for life than England or Scotland.
It is estimated that, prior to the 5p bag charge, Scotland used an estimated 750 million plastic carriers, which is more per head than anywhere else in the UK. To see such reductions so shortly after the introduction of the charge is a very positive step towards a greener, less wasteful future for Scotland.
England shall hopefully follow the strong example set by the rest of the UK when they introduce a charge come October 2015.