DON'T THROW IT ALL AWAY WE URGE FANS
09 May 2013
Music fans attending this year’s Hebridean Celtic Festival could swap garbage for gifts and discards for drinks by returning their empties.
HebCelt is one of eight venues in Scotland to host innovative schemes where people are given incentives for recycling glass, aluminium and plastic drinks containers.
The award-winning festival, which is celebrating its 18th anniversary this year and based in Stornoway in the island of Lewis, will have Recycle and Reward machines on its main site to encourage recycling.
As well as helping the environment, festival goers can receive prizes by taking part. Among the prizes on offer are an iPad, iPod Nanos, a family weekend ticket for next year’s HebCelt, festival hoodies and t-shirts as well as vouchers for snacks or drinks.
The Recycle and Reward scheme was launched earlier this year by Richard Lochhead, the Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs and Environment, who said small schemes like this can have a big impact on the environment.
It is hoped that the local pilot projects, part of the Scottish Government’s Zero Waste Scotland programme, will encourage people to recycle more and limit the amount of used drinks containers going to landfill.
Mr Lochhead said each year, around 22,000 tonnes of plastic drinks bottles alone go to landfill in Scotland. If that was separated for recycling it could be worth around £6 million to the economy.
The project is the latest green initiative by HebCelt which last month graduated from the Carbon Trust Scotland’s Carbon Management programme. The festival is committed to decreasing its carbon emissions by 14 per cent by 2017 which will reduce its environmental impact and cut costs.
The Hebridean Celtic Festival Trust has drawn up a series of long-term aims to help minimise the event’s impact on the environment. This includes the sustainable use of resources, reducing emissions and raising awareness of environmental matters among volunteers, suppliers, contractors, artists and festival goers.
Caroline MacLennan, the festival director, said “We are delighted to host a recycle and reward scheme which is another opportunity for us to encourage festival goers to think about the environment while enjoying the event.
“We are determined to make the festival one of the most environmentally-friendly in the country and this is another step towards achieving that goal.”
The Recycle and Reward schemes are being piloted at 12 Scottish locations, including retail outlets, event venues, shopping centres, schools and colleges. These will be independently monitored and evaluated to assess the potential impact the roll-out of similar schemes could have on recycling rates in Scotland.
Iain Gulland, Director, Zero Waste Scotland, said: “It’s vital that we consider fresh approaches to boosting recycling rates and capturing the value of materials which would otherwise be sent straight to landfill. Through this pilot we want to assess the impact of this approach which has proved successful around the world, including in Germany, South Australia and Scandinavia.
“It’s important we change the way people view waste in Scotland and we’ll be looking at how incentivising these recycling schemes impacts on recycling rates and complements other schemes designed to capture valuable materials, including kerbside, recycling centres and banks.”