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Scot­tish Scot­tishWater­has Water has an­nounced plans to roll out tap water re­fill points in ev­ery lo­cal au­thor­ity area around Scot­land over the next two years.

Un­der the ini­tia­tive, coun­cils are be­ing con­sulted to iden­tify the best lo­ca­tions with the aim of hav­ing the first 10 top-up taps in­stalled by the end of March 2019.

The move fol­lows the launch ear­lier this year of the Your Water, Your Life cam­paign in which the util­ity called for cus­tomers to drink tap water at home, at work and on the move as a way of re­duc­ing waste, sav­ing money and stay­ing hy­drated.

Ed­in­burgh has been se­lected as the first lo­ca­tion for a top-up tap, which will be po­si­tioned out­side the Scot­tish Par­lia­ment. The other sites be­ing con­sid­ered for the in­tial roll­out in­clude Glas­gow, Ayr, Dum­fries, Dun­fermline, Fort Wil­liam, Mil­ngavie, Oban, In­ver­ness and Aberdeen.

The units will be fit­ted with tech­nol­ogy that will en­able them to dig­i­tally track water us­age at each top-up point, trans­mit­ting the data via cloud tech­nol­ogy to spe­cial­ists man­ag­ing Scot­land’s water net­works.

The re­sult­ing data will be used to cal­cu­late cost and plas­tic sav­ings, along with the vol­ume of water be­ing con­sumed.

Dou­glas Mil­li­can, Scot­tish Water chief ex­ec­u­tive, said: “The cre­ation of a new net­work of pub­lic top-up taps across the coun­try as part of our Your Water, Your Life cam­paign, is a sig­nif­i­cant boost in en­cour­ag­ing more peo­ple to choose to drink tap water in their daily lives.

“Our re­search shows that peo­ple feel very pos­i­tively to­wards the qual­ity of Scot­land’s tap water – now these sta­teof-the-art taps can pro­vide ac­cess to en­able water drinkers to en­joy it while on the go by car­ry­ing and us­ing re­fill­able bot­tles.”

A na­tional drive to en­cour­age peo­ple to stay hy­drated by drink­ing water from the tap in re­fill­able bot­tles was set out in the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment’s Pro­gramme for Gov­ern­ment 2018-2019.

En­vi­ron­ment Sec­re­tary Roseanna Cun­ning­ham said: “I am de­lighted that our Pro­gramme for Gov­ern­ment com­mit­ment to pi­lot the cre­ation of a net­work of pub­lic water re­fill points is com­ing to fruition so quickly.

“By en­cour­ag­ing peo­ple to top up from the tap us­ing re­fill­able bot­tles, we will help cut down on our use of plas­tics and pro­mote the ben­e­fits of hy­dra­tion build­ing on Scot­tish Water’s Your Water, Your Life cam­paign.

“I now look for­ward to re­fill­ing my bot­tle at the top-up tap out­side the par­lia­ment in the com­ing months.”

The Your Water, Your Life cam­paign aims to make tap the first choice for water drinkers wher­ever they are, and en­cour­ages busi­nesses to make it read­ily avail­able for staff and cus­tomers. Zero Waste Scot­land, Keep Scot­land Beau­ti­ful and Scot­tish Nat­u­ral Her­itage have also voiced their sup­port.

Fresh re­fills The new ini­tia­tive will pro­vide water for ev­ery lo­cal au­thor­ity area in Scot­land

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