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Southport and  Mersey Reporter -  Your free online newspaper service covering the Merseyside region - (Greater Liverpool).
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Issue:- 16 September 2010


BUSINESSES are invited to attend a free information session to learn more about electric vehicles and plans to provide a network of charging points across Merseyside.  The Liverpool City Region (LCR) and Cheshire West & Chester is shortly submitting an application for Government funding to set up a network of electric vehicle charging points as part of the Government’s Plugged-In Places project.  The LCR has already successfully submitted an expression of interest to be part of the second phase of the initiative.  Interested organisations are invited to attend 1 of the next 2 information sessions on  17 September 2010 and 29 September 2010. Held at Merseyside Transport Partnership’s (MTP) offices in Hatton Garden, Liverpool, the events will be an opportunity for businesses, leisure and retail sites, commercial property owners and visitor attractions to learn more about the benefits of installing electric vehicle charging points in their car parks.

Sarah Jolly, Climate Change Officer at MTP, said:- “The electric vehicle charging points can be used for staff or fleet vehicles and can provide a valuable service to new and existing customers. The information events will be an excellent opportunity for organisations to learn more about the scheme.”

The Government funding will allow MTP to cover half of the installation costs for organisations installing charging points. Those attending the event will be invited to sign up to join the scheme, before the funding application is submitted in late October 2010.

Sarah Jolly continued:- “This is a pioneering initiative that has the potential to dramatically improve air quality across Merseyside. Cutting carbon emissions is a key goal for us and, as well as encouraging people to swap their cars for more sustainable forms of transport, such as walking, cycling or using public transport, MTP will also be promoting low emission and electric vehicles through the Third Local Transport Plan (LTP3).  The need for climate change action overall, and from the transport sector in particular, has been growing in recent years. Work taking place at a local level across the region is helping Merseyside work towards its targets for climate change and carbon reduction and is already playing an important part in shaping national and regional policies.”

The information events will be held at the following times:-

► Friday, 17 September 2010, 9.30am to 11.30am
► Wednesday, 29 September 2010, 9.30am to 11.30am

To register please email stating your name and which date you would like to attend. Alternatively, please contact Sarah Jolly on:- 0151 330 1156.

New research recommends introduction of a UK-wide deposit refund scheme

THE Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) has published new research that clearly demonstrates a drinks container deposit refund scheme (DRS, covering glass bottles, plastic bottles and cans) would cost little to set up, and would generate revenue to support most of its own running costs. The research demonstrates how the scheme would help the Government achieve a ‘Zero Waste’ economy by increasing recycling rates, and reducing litter as promised in the Coalition’s ‘Programme for Government’.

Critically, at a time of public spending restraint, the report highlights how the scheme would reduce costs to the public sector by £160 million per year (or £7 per household), whilst also securing significant benefits in reducing litter.

Bill Bryson, CPRE President, says:- “These findings throw rational and informed light on an issue that is nonsensically contentious in the UK. What sensible nation would not want to capture and recycle its precious and finite resources? What discerning people would not want to enjoy a litter-free environment?   CPRE has published this research to reignite the debate, so that an effective mechanism which delivers environmental and social benefits in many other countries can be given its proper consideration in the UK.”

The new research report, ‘Have we got the bottle? Implementing a deposit refund scheme in the UK,’ was prepared by respected research consultants, Eunomia Research & Consulting. It shows that a sensibly implemented DRS would deliver environmental benefits well in excess of the costs of implementation. The report suggests a deposit of 15p for containers smaller than 500ml and 30p for those larger would generate return rates of around 90%.

Samantha Harding, CPRE Stop the Drop Campaign Manager, says:- “The UK has a serious litter problem and the year on year increase in the cost of clearing it up has become unsustainable. We need to look at new ways of tackling litter and changing behaviours. Our research shows that a deposit refund scheme would reduce litter and increase rates of recycling, while at the same time reducing public sector spending on waste.   A deposit refund scheme supports anti-litter messages with sound financial incentives. The principle behind this idea is that the polluter pays. The small minority of people who drop litter or can’t be bothered to recycle, will end up footing the bill. Under this proposal, the Government does not pay and responsible consumers do not pay.  There are huge potential benefits to introducing a deposit refund scheme. We have modelled a scheme that is easy and convenient to use - and cost effective to deliver for both Government and consumers.”

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