Scottish Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead has launched a public awareness campaign ahead of the introduction of a 5p charge for carrier bags.
From 20 October, it will cost at least 5p for each single-use carrier bag given out to shoppers in supermarkets, corner shops and takeaways and any other shops.
Richard Lochhead (pictured) said: “In Scotland we use over 800 million new single-use carrier bags every year – more per head than elsewhere in the UK. That is something we want to change. This milestone legislation underlines that Scotland is serious about tackling litter, reducing waste and creating a cleaner, greener environment for everyone to enjoy.
“We want people to stop and think about whether they really need another bag that could end up as litter. Instead, we want people to get into the habit of reusing bags. The message of this campaign is that if we all remember our bags when we head out to the high street, the supermarket or corner shop, it’s better for the environment and we’ll save money.”
Zero Waste Scotland director Iain Gulland said: “This is a timely campaign to alert shoppers to the imminent carrier bag charge in Scotland, an important measure to encourage reuse of bags and reduce the amount of litter in our communities.
“Zero Waste Scotland has been rolling out a programme of support to Scottish retailers to help them understand the regulations, and make the necessary changes in their business. I’d also like to encourage retailers to sign up to our Carrier Bag Commitment and donate proceeds from the charge to good causes – it’s quick, easy, and provides great publicity for your business and the good causes you choose to support.”