Will free water refill points cut waste?

Scheme to be rolled out across UK

water bottles
Campaigners want to drastically reduce the use of disposable plastic bottles
(Image credit: GNL Media/Getty Images)

British shops, cafes and businesses are to offer free water refill points for customers in every major city and town in England by 2021.

Water UK, which represents the water industry, says the plan could prevent the use of tens of millions of disposable plastic bottles a year, the BBC says.

Users will be able to use an app to locate the nearest refill point, reports The Guardian, and signs will be posted in the windows of participating shops and businesses.

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Hospitality conglomerate Whitbread has already signed up, pledging to provide free drinking water for customers and passers-by in each of its 3,000 Costa Coffee shops and Premier Inn hotels from March this year.

Water UK’s chief executive, Michael Roberts, said the industry wants to “help turn this harmful tide of plastic waste”.

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