Blog : Greener Scotland

Scotland’s 5p bag charge: one year on

Scotland’s 5p bag charge: one year on

650 million single-use carrier bags. That’s the number it would take to cover the entire surface of Loch Ness twice – and you would still have 50 million to spare.

It also happens to be the (completely phenomenal) number that Scottish retailers are reporting carrier bag usage to have fallen by since the 5p bag charge was introduced on 20 October 2014, exactly a year ago today.

Previous statistics showed that shoppers in Scotland used more than 800 million new single-use carrier bags every single year – more per head than anywhere else in the UK. Shockingly, more than 7.4 million of these were being collected from Scottish beaches, streets and public spaces by litter collectors each year.

In October 2014, we worked with the Scottish Government to introduce the 5p charge to shoppers across Scotland in a bid to help tackle waste and help clean up Scotland’s environment. Since then, we’ve helped both the Government and Zero Waste Scotland raise awareness of the 5p charge amongst shoppers and to encourage retailers to sign up to Scotland’s Carrier Bag Commitment and pledge to record figures on bag usage and donate the proceeds to good causes.

During this time we produced hundreds of branded tote bags, successfully stuffed a giant elephant prop in the back of a much too small van, scrambled around on the floor of more than one shopping centre, and held multiple photocalls featuring everyone from Scotland’s Environment Secretary to helicopter pilots loaded with armfuls of reusable bags. We’ve come out smiling though, because the results have been more incredible than we could ever have hoped.

In just one year, usage has been cut by 80%, and signatories to the Carrier Bag Commitment have reported a staggering sum of nearly £7 million raised for good causes. Perhaps even more rewardingly though, the 650 million bags saved this year show that it’s now becoming second nature to shoppers to reuse their carrier bags.

So next time you’re out shopping remember to BYOB: bring your own bags!

Serving up Happier Mealtimes

Serving up Happier Mealtimes

Healthy, tasty food is something of a passion for us here at Stripe so we’re very proud to have helped launch the Scottish Government’s ‘Happier Mealtimes’ campaign.

It’s all about championing the sourcing and eating of fresh, in-season food which is nutritious, tastes delicious and also has environmental benefits.

We kicked it off with a taste test of delicious samples at a pop-up food kitchen in Edinburgh’s Festival Square.

The four-week campaign offers advice on how to find and use fresh, in-season foods as well as easy to make, tasty recipes from some of Scotland’s leading chefs and food organisations.

The pop-up food kitchen is also on the road to spread the ‘Happier Mealtimes’ message across the country so keep your eyes peeled!

Find out more at Greener Scotland.

Pupils help launch new ‘Greener Together’ campaign

Pupils help launch new ‘Greener Together’ campaign

Stripe worked with the Scottish Government to launch its new ‘Greener Together’ campaign encouraging Scots to work together for a cleaner, greener future. Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and the Environment, Richard Lochhead joined four pupils from Edinburgh’s Flora Stevenson Primary School at the capital’s Inverleith Park to celebrate the new initiative, which is encouraging the nation to “Go Greener Together”. The campaign aims to get Scots doing their bit to help make a difference for the future. By showing we can all contribute, the campaign encourages people to recognise greener living benefits for them, their families and Scotland as a whole. Recent research* has shown that 72 per cent of respondents agree greener living was necessary and over half (52 per cent) said they would like to do more to help the environment. The campaign encourages a wide range of ways Scots can make a difference and support the Scottish Government’s ambitious climate change targets of a 42 per cent reduction in CO2 by 2020 and an 80 per cent reduction by 2050. *Overarching Greener campaign insight gathering, TNS 2011