Tesco announces Keep Scotland Beautiful and Keep Wales Tidy as beneficiaries of carrier bag levy

The environmental charities were the winners of a vote by the supermarket chain's customers

Tesco bags
Tesco bags

The supermarket chain Tesco has announced that the environmental charities Keep Scotland Beautiful and Keep Wales Tidy will benefit from an estimated £1.8m raised from carrier bag charges.

More than 27,000 Tesco customers took part in the vote to choose the beneficiaries of the levy, which is expected to be worth about £1m in Scotland and about £800,000 in Wales. Both charities, which were chosen from a list of 120 organisations, are planning to use the money to fund a variety of projects to keep local communities clean, green and tidy. The partnerships will run from 20 October 2014 for at least a year.

Compulsory charging for plastic carrier bags came into force in Wales in October 2011, and a similar charge is to be introduced in Scotland from this October. Since 2011, the charge in Wales has raised more than £2.3m for the wildlife charity the RSPB to fund its conservation work.

Greg Sage, community director for Tesco, said: "Keep Scotland Beautiful and Keep Wales Tidy now have a fantastic opportunity to use the money raised from the bag charge to make a real difference to the communities they serve."

Derek Robertson, chief executive of Keep Scotland Beautiful, thanked those who voted. "Lots of local community groups and organisations that work in partnership with us, from all across Scotland, will benefit from this funding," he said. 

Lesley Jones, chief executive of Keep Wales Tidy, said: "We’re delighted to have received the vote of confidence from our supporters and Tesco customers. Keep Wales Tidy campaigned hard for the introduction of the bag levy and we’re extremely pleased that it has resulted in a dramatic reduction in the use of single-use carrier bags and that proceeds from the levy are being used to support environmental action."

Nominations also opened this week for the 2014 Tesco Charity Trust Community Awards Scheme, worth £200,000. The scheme will make one-off donations of between £500 and £2,500 to registered charities and not-for-profit organisations for working on local projects that support health, opportunities for young people and environmental sustainability.

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