Most people who received money back through a drinks deposit return scheme (DRS) would donate some of this to charity, potentially raising £1.3bn for good causes.
The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) said its finding showed that charities would benefit, provided the ‘all-in’ option for a scheme was chosen because this would capture more materials than the ‘on-the-go’ alternative.
Among 2,112 respondents surveyed, 20% said they would donate all the money involved to charity, 19% most of it and 34% some.
The CPRE said that by including an option for the public to donate their deposits – as in most DRSs in other countries – the scheme could work as a charity fundraiser in a similar way to the carrier bag charge, which has raised £66m.
CPRE litter programme director Samantha Harding said: ”An effective all-in DRS will bring an end to the growing disenchantment and scepticism around current recycling methods by doubling recycling rates.
“But it is also evident that the deposit, as well as encouraging the right behaviour in terms of recycling, would allow for people’s generous natures to be realised when it comes to supporting others.”
Harding said the scheme should include “every bottle, can, carton and pouch, whatever the shape, size or material”.
The CPRE said it would like to see Scotland’s planned all-in system applied across the UK, but this is still subject to Government consultations and has met opposition from the glass industry.
Environment secretary Michael Gove last month hinted that he favoured an all-in scheme for England but is still considering the on-the-go option, involving only smaller bottles and cans typically bought for portable drinks.