According to the CPRE, each household throws away 500 plastic bottles a year, but only recycles 130 of them – leaving 370 to go to landfill or litter the streets.
However, if drinks retailers added 10p to the price of bottles and refunded the customer when they returned it for recycling, the CPRE thinks it would lead to a cleaner environment.
CPRE president and author Bill Bryson said: “None of us need stand idly by as our towns and countryside are trashed. Of course it is vital that people do not drop litter in the first place, but local authorities, central government and other public bodies have a duty to clear it up and should all give a much stronger lead on the problem. We can all put pressure on them to do so.”
Deposit schemes are already in place in a number of countries, including Australia, Germany, Denmark and Sweden.