THE UK Government's demand that glass be excluded from Scotland's Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) threatens the "viability" of the policy, the minister in charge of the project has said. 

After receiving the UK Government's official response to the Scottish Government's request for an exclusion from the UK Internal Market Act - which is necessary for Scotland to roll out the scheme ahead of other UK nations - Circular Economy Minister Lorna Slater said that demanding glass be excluded from the scheme amounted to "sabotage". 

She said: “Once again the UK Government has shown utter disregard for devolution. Scottish ministers received the UK Government’s decision letter at 10pm on a Friday night, more than 12 hours after its contents being briefed to press. This is treating the Scottish Parliament with contempt.

“Despite discussions over the last two years this is an eleventh hour attempt by the UK Government to sabotage Scotland’s Deposit Return Scheme by forcing us to remove glass bottles.

"This is at odds with all the evidence that says the biggest benefits, economically, financially and environmentally, are from including glass.

"We are now going to have to look very seriously at where this leaves the viability of the Scottish scheme and talk to businesses, delivery partners and other organisations over the coming days and weeks.

“Removing glass also means taking out around six hundred million bottles that would have been collected by the scheme, despite businesses in Scotland having invested millions of pounds in preparation to include them.

READ MORE: BBC framing of Deposit Return Scheme row 'extraordinary', says FM

"Many of these bottles will unnecessarily end up as broken glass on our streets, our parks and our beaches.”

The UK Government has said it will grant a "temporary and limited" exclusion to the Internal Market Act if glass is excluded from the scheme. 

However, if the Scottish Government acqueice to this request they may be forced to fork out compensation to businesses who have already spent money in preparation for a scheme which includes glass. 

The Scottish Greens have now launched a petition calling on Rishi Sunak to allow glass to be included in Scotland's DRS.