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Single Use Plastics Ban Comes into Effect in Scotland

Single use plastics are illegal in Scotland, in most circumstances, after a ban came into effect on the 1st of June.

Around 700 million single use items are used in Scotland every year, and after COP 26 the Scottish Parliament voted to ban the disposable waste.

Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater said: “By banning some of the most problematic single-use plastic items in Scotland, we are turning our promises into action. Every year, hundreds of millions of single-use plastics are wasted, with many of them littering our beaches, waters and parks.

“This ban will encourage businesses to make the switch to reusable alternatives, helping to reduce litter and cut emissions.”

Local authorities are responsible for enforcing the ban, and can fine businesses £5,000 for providing single use plastics.

The ban also includes: plastic cutlery (forks, knives, spoons, chopsticks), plates, beverage stirrers and balloon sticks; food containers made of expanded polystyrene; and cups and other beverage containers made of expanded polystyrene, including their covers and lids.

However, items such as single use plastic straws are exempt to make sure that those who need them for independent living or medical purposes can still access them.

Highland Perthshire is already taking steps to look after the local environment, local environmental groups are meeting to raise awareness, politicians are lobbying parliament and local groups are cleaning up the countryside.

Some groups are teaming up with Keep Scotland Beautiful to clean up the River Tay as part of the River Tay Clean Up.

Ross Dempster from Beyond Adventure, a water sports business based in Aberfeldy, said: “We organise litter picks quite a lot. We’ve found all sorts – beer cans, crisp packets, plastic bags and traffic cones. We are delighted to be part of the Upstream Battle campaign to raise awareness of litter and help to clean up our local waterway.”

More information is available on: https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ssi/2021/410/contents/made

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