Is it ever OK to use a plastic bottle these days? The app finding local businesses that happily refill your bottle (for free).

Ban the bottle! Don’t use single-use plastic water bottles! ‘Reuse, refill and recycle your bottle’ is the very clear message being bandied around London this Spring. It’s time to cut the millions of plastic bottles that end up in the world’s ocean. Are you on board? The London Mayor is, and so are many big name businesses including Tate modern, Costco and BFI Imax.

To help you join the crusade against plastic pollution, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan is supporting the Refill London project encouraging businesses to refill your bottles. Sadiq hopes that London will send no biodegradable or recyclable waste to landfill by 2026; he plans to install new public water fountains across London over the next three years.

The free Get The Refill app helps you locate nearby businesses that support the cause and will happily refill any water bottle you have. Participating shops and businesses of the new project will have ‘refill’ stickers in their windows letting people know they are offering free tap water. You can also earn points on the App each time you refill to get a free water bottle. Can’t find any Refill stations near you? Take a photo, tap the map on the app and request for a Refill station. The App has been built in conjunction with Geovation.

‘Refill puts the power to stop plastic pollution in people's hands - it's a fantastically easy way to reduce your plastic consumption and save money at the same time,’ says City to Sea founder Natalie Fee. ’Businesses can add themselves to the app too and help create the wave of change needed to keep plastic bottles out of the Thames!’

The average Londoner buys more than three plastic bottles every week on average – equating to 175 bottles every year per person. Approximately 7.7 billion plastic bottles are bought across the UK each year. This results in vast amounts of single-use plastic waste.

‘A free tap water scheme is long overdue in London and I welcome all of the retailers and business who have shown their strong commitment to reducing unnecessary plastic waste by joining the London Refill scheme,’ Khan said.

April 2018