£1m funding bids to turn the tide on marine plastic pollution

3 October 2018, 12:21

Plastic Ocean

The Scottish Government is doubling its cash help for projects that aim to tackle the "scourge" of marine plastic pollution.

Environment Secretary Roseanna Cunningham announced £1 million is being made available - up from the £500,000 that had previously been promised.

She hailed the additional cash as a demonstration of ministers' "absolute commitment" to tackling the problem.

Zero Waste Scotland, which works to cut waste and increase recycling, will distribute the cash through its circular economy investment fund and its waste prevention implementation fund.

The Environment Secretary revealed the funding boost as she addressed the Scottish Resources Conference in Edinburgh.

Ms Cunningham said: "By making £1 million available to support innovative projects aimed at tackling marine plastic pollution, we are doubling our previous pledge - further demonstrating our absolute commitment to tackle the scourge of marine plastic pollution.

"We want to attract and invest in innovative projects which prevent plastics entering the marine environment or propose operational solutions to capture, collect, recover and reprocess marine plastic waste.

"I believe that investment of this nature has the potential to benefit our environment, economy and our coastlines which suffer from the unintended consequences of modern day lifestyle choices."

Zero Waste Scotland chief executive Iain Gulland said: "Scotland's marine environment is increasingly suffering from our throwaway habits, and very visibly when it comes to the proliferation of single-use plastics. We know this is an issue people across Scotland are keen to see action on.

"Through these funds, we are looking to invest in innovative projects which prevent plastics entering the marine environment or propose operational solutions to capture, collect, recover and reprocess marine waste plastics - allowing them to be processed for high-value recovery.

"These projects have the potential to benefit our environment, our economy and our coastlines."