Container Deposit Scheme For Victoria

For many years the Victorian government position was that they were ‘monitoring and evaluating’ other schemes being introduced across Australia.  Then in February 2020, they agreed to introduce a CDS by 2023, embarking on an extensive consultation process about its design.

Undoubtedly there was widespread community support. An IPSOS Poll conducted in June 2018, on behalf of Boomerang ally, the Total Environment Centre, showed that 84% of Victorians support a Container Deposit Scheme. This polling fully reinforced the response that we saw in regional Victoria on our Big Bottle Tour in April 2018.

We’re not entirely sure why it took so long - but one insider view is that heavy lobbying by the hotel and gaming industry caused a serious blockage. The schemes already in place around Australia have been producing fantastic results, even from the earliest stages – just check out the other pages on this site detailing what’s happening in other states and territories. In the meantime, Victoria is still struggling to deal with an excessive volume of container litter finding its way into the environment – two thirds of plastic litter volume in Victoria is made up of beverage containers – and our kerbside recycling is in crisis. 

The lack of market for the contaminated plastics being collected through the existing kerbside system is leading to stockpiling by recyclers unable to shift an ever-increasing quantity of unwanted plastic. The fires at the SKM sites across Victoria are a direct consequence of this stockpiling, with the Victorian EPA being forced to close four sites across the state due to non-compliance. This has subsequently left several local councils with no choice but to send their recyclables to landfill, resulting in environmentally poor outcomes combined with higher costs to councils which are forced to pay landfill levies for the disposal of recyclable materials.

But we see a huge opportunity in this crisis! Boomerang Alliance will continue the push for a circular economy, with the constantly growing support of the Victorian community and councils behind us.

We are forming alliances between councils, associations, businesses and volunteer groups.  Whether it’s clean-ups with the Yarra Riverkeeper Association, Beach Patrol or Tangaroa Blue, or rallies on the steps of Parliament with Friends of the Earth, or representing those voices on the Victorian Environment Minister’s Plastic Pollution Reference Group, we will continue our work to make sure Victoria has the best CDS.  


We went on a tour across regional Victoria in April 2018 with a 3m long Coke bottle in tow, calling for a 10 cents refundable deposit on bottles and cans. We were supported by allies and welcomed by councils, collected many signatures and empty containers, which we delivered to the Premier!

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Does your group, organisation or business support CDS and want to benefit from the funds created through the scheme? - sign on today to endorse the Cash for Containers campaign in Victoria and help make Australia litter free.

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Sign the petition to Lily D'Ambrosio asking the Victorian government adopt a world class container deposit scheme. Now it has agreed to a CDS, the state can learn the lessons from other jurisdictions about consumer convenience, maximising recycling and independent management.

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This page was last updated on 25 March 2019