As part of a pilot project to encourage staff and passengers to recycle more cans and bottles, Glasgow Airport in Scotland has unveiled two Reverse Vending Machines. Introduced in partnership with Biffa, the airport’s waste management partner, the two machines will be based on the first-floor area next to the e-gate entrance to the security hall and in the main area of the departure lounge for the next four weeks.

The machines will provide a dedicated return point for cans and bottles and it is hoped the reverse vending machines will encourage staff and passengers to boost recycling efforts. Each machine can accept 320 plastic bottles and 650 cans. Introduced on a trial basis the installation of the two machines coincides with the COP26 summit on climate change and comes ahead of the introduction of the Scottish Government’s Deposit Return Scheme, which is due to begin next summer. The desposit return scheme will see consumers pay a 20p deposit when buying a drink in a bottle or can which is reimbursed when the container is returned to a collection point.

Ahead of the Deposit Return Scheme going live in 2022, Glasgow Airport has agreed to donate 5p for each bottle or can deposited in the machines during their four-week trial to an environmentally-themed charity or project.

“AGS Airports Ltd launched its Sustainability Strategy earlier this summer and as a group we are committed to continuing our policy of diverting 100% of our non-hazardous waste away from landfill and to incorporate circular economy principals where possible to enhance and encourage sustainable development at our airports,” said Kirsty Webster, Sustainability Manager at Glasgow Airport.

One of the key aims of AGS Airport’s strategy is to ban all unavoidable single-use products within the airport by 2022. “We’ve made great progress in this area already with teh introduction of a number of water refill stations within the airport as well as pre-security sinks where passengers can empty their water bottles and carry them through security rather than just dispose of them,” Webster added.

The introduction of the reverse vending machines further complements the work already being done to reduce unnecessary waste. They will also help to ensure cleaner, better-quality recycling and serve as a reminder of the need to recycle cans and bottles for all those using the airport.

Carla Brian, Senior Commercial Development Manager at Biffa added: “We are delighted to be partnering with Glasgow Airport to install two Reverse Vending Machines during a time where sustainability is rightly at the forefront of the agenda.

“By providing the public with an engaging way to deposit their plastic bottles and cans, we can ensure these bottles are recycled through our state-of-the-art facilities, being put back into the circular economy to be reused, supporting Scotland’s vision of a greener future as it prepares to introduce the Deposit Return scheme.”

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