The NSW Container Deposit Scheme (Return and Earn) started on 1 December. It’s the first modern scheme in Australia (there are older systems in South Australia over 40 years ago and the NT in 2012). Not surprisingly there are implementation issues we are learning about fast – lessons Qld and WA which are also introducing schemes are watching closely.
It was a hard fought and long battle to get the CDS up with the vast majority of the community confronting the beverage industry. Even when Premier Mike Baird announced an election commitment in early 2015, the Advisory Committee set up soon after had to debate for a year whether we should have a deposit scheme because the Premier’s media release said the government would consider ‘better alternatives’. There were none especially on environmental grounds as CDSs around the world are proven to massively reduce bottle and can litter. And a recent benefit cost study by the EPA found a benefit of $1.33 for every $1 of cost.Read more
The Victorian Environment Minister Lily D’Ambrosio announced last week that Victoria might consider a ban on light-weight plastic bags, saying: "We believe that a national ban is the most effective way to address the issue but we have not ruled out going it alone."
Globally 95% of plastic packaging is used once and then discarded, often as litter. Researchers estimate that if this trend continues there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean (by weight) by 2050.
In Australia, most state governments are moving to reduce plastic litter through the introduction of container deposit schemes and bans on plastic bags. These are recognised as the first steps in addressing plastic pollution of our environment.
The next step is to address the many other forms of disposable plastics, like coffee cups, polystyrene containers, straws, takeaway containers and a whole raft of other single-use items.
EMPOWERING COMMUNITIES TO MAKE A REAL DIFFERENCE
Many individuals, governments and businesses have become aware of the plastic pollution problem and are changing habits and practices. However, what we lack is a whole community taking control of its plastic footprint, with a focus on long lasting solutions, and showing other communities how this can be achieved.
We know that communities coming together is a powerful way to instigate wide scale change - beginning with the individual, extending to the community and then to our politicians.
Our ‘Communities Taking Control’ campaign is the next step to achieving this wide scale change. Our goal is to produce a ‘how to’ guide that can be rolled out to any community looking to comprehensively reduce its plastic footprint. To help provide insight into how this can be achieved, we have initiated two pilot communities – Noosa in Queensland, and Wollongong in NSW.
PLASTIC FREE COMMUNITY PILOTS IN NOOSA AND WOLLONGONG
‘Plastic Free Noosa’ and ‘Plastic Free Wollongong’ are community-based projects with an aspirational goal to reduce the use of identified single use plastic packaging (by 50%) by November 2018. They are 'whole of community plans' and involve local council, businesses (specifically hospitality/retailers), media, community organisations, schools, event organisers and active individuals all working together to achieve the goal.
The aim in the first year (2017/2018) is for:
- the retail (and hospitality) sector to agree to supply preferred products (alternatives to single use plastics) to the public,
- schools and event organisers to hold plastic-free events and
- individuals to take up the plastic free challenge
Learn more about our pilot communities below:
PLASTIC FREE PLACES
Are you a community also looking to reduce your plastic footprint? If so, we'd love to hear from you! We're starting up a network of ‘Plastic Free Places’ - if you'd like to be involved, or simply want some more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Below is an an overview of our campaign to help get you started:
Be a part of a broad and diverse coalition fighting for Cash for Containers in Victoria.
Hundreds of community groups, charities and non-profit organisations around Australia added their name to the Cash for Containers campaign and were instrumental in our success in NSW, Queensland and WA. Now it is Victoria's turn - sign on today to endorse the Cash for Containers campaign in Victoria and help make Australia litter free.
Our Cash for Containers model is based on the best examples in the world and has benefits for the entire community, economy and environment. Read more about our model here and the benefits for your organisation here.
Whether you’re a local neighbourhood group, a major environmental NGO, a student organisation, school, small business or any other type of group, we’d love your support. If you are not part of any organisation, you can still support us by signing up here.
Letter of support
WE SUPPORT BOOMERANG ALLIANCE’S CASH FOR CONTAINER MODEL BECAUSE WE BELIEVE IT WOULD HAVE SEVERAL BENEFITS FOR VICTORIA
A 10-cent refundable container deposit scheme (cash for containers) will slash the amount of litter polluting our parks, streets, rivers and oceans. It will create jobs in recycling and provide valuable sources of income for charities, community groups and individuals interested in collecting cans and bottles.
We demand that Victoria acts now and adopts a container deposit scheme in line with what NSW will start in December 2017, Queensland in July 2018 and which is promised by both sides of politics in Western Australia. The time to act is NOW!
We are welcoming the change to the start date of the NSW Container Deposit Scheme (CDS) to the 1st of December 2017 as good policy and congratulated the government on listening to the many requests for more time to rollout a better serviced scheme.
Can you help us win this once and for all?
Be a part of a broad and diverse coalition fighting for Cash for Containers around Australia.
Hundreds of community groups, charities and non-profit organisations around Australia have already added their name to the Cash for Containers campaign. Sign on today to endorse the Cash for Containers campaign and help make Australia litter free.
Whether you're a local neighbourhood group, major environmental NGO, student organisation, small business or something else, we'd love to have your support.
We support Boomerang Alliance's Cash for Containers model.
A 10-cent refundable container deposit system will slash the amount of litter polluting our parks, streets, rivers and ocean. It will create new jobs in recycling and provide valuable sources of income for charities, community groups and individuals interested in collecting cans and bottles.
Our Cash for Containers model is based on the best examples in the world and has big benefits for the entire community, economy and environment. Read more about our model here and the benefits for your organisation here.
If your organisation is on board, add your name today.
In the last two months our campaign for a Cash for Containers scheme in Queensland has gone out to the regions, with much fanfare. Our key supporters, Surfrider Foundation, in particular, has picked up the mantle and made a big noise. With Surfider running the show, we have launched the campaign and our Queensland Plastic Pollution Report.Read more
The Queensland Government has now established two Advisory Committees to assist in the development of a cash for containers scheme and possible plastic packaging bans. I have been appointed on to both committees. We expect that the State Government will be asking the public what they think about these measures, within the next six months.Read more