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Overwhelming Scottish support for glass bottle returns

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Polling for Marine Conservation Society shows glass even more in demand than plastic for Deposit Return Scheme 

Four out of five people in Scotland think that glass should be included in a national money-back recycling system.

Ministers at Holyrood are expected to make a decision imminently on a Deposit Return Scheme, which campaigners hope will set a high standard for the rest of the UK to follow.

Sections of UK industry have been lobbying for a limited scheme which would not include all materials and container sizes, with some resisting the inclusion of glass bottles.

But research carried out by YouGov for the Marine Conservation Society shows that there’s even more support in Scotland for glass containers to be included in the scheme (85%), than plastic bottles (83%).

MCS Head of Conservation Scotland, Calum Duncan, said: “It’s clear that people in Scotland back the idea of a money-back recycling system and we want the Scottish Government to lead the UK in designing one that is world-class. 

“What is also evident from our polling is that most voters want glass, plastic, aluminium cans and other drinks cartons to be included, with glass at the very top of their list. Ministers must listen to consumers instead of those in industry with vested interests.”  

While the Scottish Government has already held a public consultation and is expected to announce the design of its scheme shortly, there’s a separate consultation, which ends on May 13th, being run by Defra which covers England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The survey showed that there’s overwhelming support for a system in Scotland that includes a wide range of drink container types. When asked what they thought should be included, 85% in Scotland said glass bottles, with 83% backing plastic bottles, followed by aluminium cans (74%), and drinks cartons made of more than one material type (61%).

After plastic pieces, glass (an average of 78 items per 100m) was number 2 on the list of most picked up items of litter found by volunteers on the MCS-organised Great British Beach Clean in Scotland last year.

Jenni Hume, Campaign Manager of Have You Got The Bottle? said: “It’s no surprise that people across Scotland are so determined to see glass bottles included in our deposit return system. Broken glass on our streets is a particular risk for young people and for pets and wild animals, and the “glass cheque” is the best way to keep that litter to a minimum.  

“Deposit return is also about making producers responsible for the materials they use. If glass – the most carbon-intensive material there is – is exempted, there would be a perverse incentive for businesses to switch to glass. Ministers must choose: will they back public demands for glass to be included, and will they support jobs in Scotland’s glass recycling sector?” 

The Marine Conservation Society has led calls for compatible Deposit Return Schemes to be introduced across the UK. Last week, MCS launched its Bottles for Change campaign by calling on retailers to support a comprehensive “all-in” scheme and urging Defra to resist industry lobbying.

MCS is urging people to take part by visiting www.bottlesforchange.uk and responding to Defra’s  consultation before May 13th. Supporters in Scotland can write to their MSPs at: www.act.foe.scot/deposit-return-system 

Gear Reviews

Gear Review: Fourth Element 3mm Neoprene Gloves (Watch Video)

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In a video shot exclusively for Scubaverse.com, Jeff Goodman reviews the 3mm Neoprene Gloves from Fourth Element.

For more information, visit www.fourthelement.com

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Veterans take part in Hadrian’s Wall trek to raise funds for their ‘Red Sea family’

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A group of veterans from Scuba Diving rehabilitation charity Deptherapy have pledged to take part in a 40 mile expedition-style trek along historic Hadrian’s Wall this July to raise funds for the staff at Egyptian dive centre and resort Roots Red Sea.

The dive centre in El Quseir has been closed since the start of the Covid-19 Pandemic last Spring and with Egypt now on the red list for UK travellers it is unlikely to be able to re-open in the near future. UK couple Steve and Clare Rattle, who own Roots Red Sea, have been supporting the 16 staff of the dive centre and their families but faced with an ever increasingly uncertain future, the Deptherapy beneficiaries wanted to add their support too.

Roots Red Sea is Deptherapy’s home from home in Egypt and the location where the charity’s majority of overseas training courses and expeditions are held. The facilities at the Egyptian dive centre and resort are a perfect fit for the charity offering an ideal combination of self-contained and fully adapted accommodation, as well as a team of highly trained staff.

Deptherapy normally runs 2-3 trips to Roots Red Sea each year but recent and planned trips continue to be a casualty of Covid. For the time being, training has shifted to UK waters, but their Egyptian family is never far from the minds of the Deptherapy Team.

“We’re hoping to raise £3,000 for the staff at Roots to support their families due to hardship caused by the pandemic,” explains Tom Oates, Deptherapy Divemaster, Ambassador and former Scots Guard.

“Deptherapy has been a lifeline for so many of us beneficiaries and an essential part of that journey has been our scuba diving adventures at Roots Red Sea. We view the staff at Roots as part of our extended families. They have become close friends. The welcome, service and care we are shown is unbelievable but now it is our turn to give something back. The staff at Roots have given us everything and have helped to save and change our lives. Now, they need our support.”

“This is an amazing endeavour from the guys at Deptherapy,” says Steve Rattle, who is organising the logistics of the trek which is planned to stretch over several days. “We have supported the charity for many years; it’s always been a delight to have them come to Roots and to see them really benefit from the experience. Now the tables are turned, and it is the families of Roots that are in need of help. It is really humbling to have Team Deptherapy now raising money for them. Awesome effort!”

The fundraiser is scheduled to take place from 12th -16th July 2021 starting from Heddon on the Wall in the east to Lenercost in the west. The route has been designed to take in a variety of features including many historical sites such as the Roman Army Museum at Greenhead.

Please give generously to sponsor Team Deptherapy in their quest to raise £3000 for the families of Roots Red Sea at the special JustGiving Page: www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/rootsredseafundraiser

For more information about the work of Deptherapy and Deptherapy Education visit www.deptherapy.co.uk.

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Competitions

Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

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