MacDonald backs Carrier bag charges
Monday, 02 June 2014 14:09
The introduction of carrier bag charges in Scotland has cleared its final parliamentary hurdle. The Scottish Parliament has approved the Single Use Carrier Bags Charge (Scotland) Regulations 2014, meaning the 5 pence minimum charge will commence on October 20 this year.
Scotland currently uses 750 million bags every year – the highest number in the UK. The purpose of the charge is to encourage shoppers to think about reusing bags to prevent litter and improve Scotland’s environment.
Welcoming the decision, Falkirk East MSP Angus MacDonald said:
“I am delighted that the Scottish Government’s regulations on carrier bag charging have been approved by Parliament.
This is landmark legislation that underlines Scotland is serious about tackling litter, reducing waste and creating a cleaner, greener environment for everyone to enjoy.
“The vast number of single use carrier bags given out in Scotland is symbolic of our throwaway society. By requiring retailers to charge at least 5p per bag it will encourage shoppers to stop and think about what is discarded. Instead of taking another bag that could end up as litter, people will re-use their bags or consider alternatives like bags for life.
“But I should emphasise that this charge is not a tax but will see retailers donating the proceeds to charity and has the potential to raise money for good causes, including environmental projects within Falkirk district.
“The level of support from the Scottish public is extremely heartening and I hope we can repeat the real success achieved in other counties, where similar measures have been brought in. I urge everyone to get behind it.”