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Grants offered to boost on-the-go recycling

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A trade body has put forward £25,000 to boost collection of drinks containers in public spaces.

The Natural Source Waters Association (NSWA), which represents companies selling mineral and spring water in the UK, is offering the cash through the #InTheLoop scheme.

Run by social enterprise Hubbub, this initiative features a toolkit to guide councils and other parties on how to encourage more recycling of on-the-go packaging.

The NSWA is offering two £12,500 grants through the scheme, prioritising locations with high footfall. Hubbub will provide ongoing support with project management and design to bring the chosen projects to life.

Local authorities, business improvement districts, shopping centres, property owners and transport hubs are invited to apply for the funding by 1 March.

First trialled in Leeds in 2018, #InTheLoop has since been trialled in Swansea, Edinburgh, Dublin, Wimbledon, Telford & Wrekin and Lambeth. More than 600 colourful street bins have been rolled out and over 2.5 million plastic and glass bottles and cans recycled.

A spokesperson for the NSWA said: “Producers are keen to make it as easy as possible for people to recycle the right things in the right places and #InTheLoop is a proven way of doing this. It improves both recycling rates and the quality of material collected on-the-go, helping these containers get another life while also reducing litter.”

Hubbub co-founder Gavin Ellis said environmentalists “can’t just pin our hopes on a deposit-return scheme”.

“We need to deal with the here and now,” he added. “The reality is we are throwing away a huge number of bottles and cans each year. More must be done to capture this material and ensure it is recycled.

“With less than half of local authorities currently having on-street recycling systems, we’re grateful to Natural Source Waters Association for providing these two generous grants and look forward to seeing what impact these have on recycling levels in the winning areas”.