Scottish Government Repeating Mistakes With ‘Vague’ Circular Economy Bill

The Circular Economy (Scotland) Bill will increase costs for businesses and deter customers the scottish hospitality sector has warned.

The bill will give Ministers powers to set local recycling targets and set statutory targets for delivery of a circular economy to measure progress in reducing waste and the nation’s carbon footprint.

From 2025, the Scottish government will set new circular economy targets to at least 2030. New targets will include consumption, reducing waste, reuse and recycling locally and nationally, and will consider both material-specific and emission-based targets. In addition, a monitoring and indicator framework will be developed over 2024/25.

Leon Thompson, Executive Director of UKHospitality Scotland, said: “Hospitality businesses had hoped the Scottish Government had learnt from its previous mistakes of introducing legislation devoid of essential details.

“The Circular Economy Bill proves that isn’t the case, to the extent that we’re going through the exact same motions we did with the Deposit Return Scheme. Like DRS, all we do know is that this Bill will ramp up costs for businesses.

“The entire sector was clear months ago that more detail was needed in the Bill to provide clarity on what it is the Scottish Government is trying to achieve, including through the introduction of a charging regime on single-use items.

“Instead, businesses are none the wiser on what charge may be levied against single-use cups and other items and what the funds might be used for.

“We’ve been here before. This is no way to treat hospitality businesses that deliver billions to the Scottish economy and employ hundreds of thousands of people. We urgently need the Scottish Government to provide further information on the proposals included in the Bill and engage rapidly with the sector.”