- Reverse Vending Machines, located in convenient places all over NSW;
- Over the Counter Collection Points, including local convenience stores and cafes,
- Automated Depots where families, individuals, community groups, sports clubs etc can take a boot load, trailer load or just a big bag.
You can check out the location of these collection points here. More are being added and you can still register to be a collection point or host a Reverse Vending Machine. So if you want more locations near you, get out and talk to potential site owners and email [email protected] to register your interest.
If you have noticed an unreasonable price increase on your favourite beverages since the scheme began (eg: above 15c per container) we would encourage you to refer your observation to the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART)
Also Return and Earn has created over 700 jobs and millions of dollars of investment in new infrastructure. New plastic bottle to bottle and expanded glass recycled content plants using the collected containers are now being built on the back of the scheme's success.
Sure, it’s been a slightly bumpy road but the teething problems have been ironed out and the results have demonstrated that it’s worth the effort. NSW already has a much cleaner environment, with far fewer bottles and containers finding their way into the litter stream. We have charities and social enterprises that are earning vital revenue through donated deposits and we have significantly reduced the quantity of plastic container that have found their way to the ocean – what’s not to love?
This page was last updated on 25 March 2019
So what is happening?
After many years campaigning, a ban on plastic bags is on the agenda at the Environment Ministers meeting on Friday 25 November 2016. It is time for action on plastic bags - once and for all.
Plastic Bag Free groups have been running local actions and collecting thousands of supporters. In 2012 Plastic Bag Free NSW volunteers have collected 12,472 signatures on a petition asking the NSW government to introduce a ban on lightweight plastic bags. On the 4th June 2015 the Plastic Bag Ban petition was presented to Bruce Notley-Smith (Member for Coogee) at NSW Parliament House; and Bruce triggered a parliamentary debate for 13 August 2015. Plastic Bag Free Victoria presented in August 2016, thousands of names to their Parliament and the Vic Greens have lodged a bill to ban the bag and other damaging plastics.
Importantly the Qld government will be issuing a Discussion Paper on a bag ban soon in 2016. We are lobbying for other states to join in.
A July 2015 Omnipoll revealed 63% of Australians (and also grocery buyers) support a ban on single use plastic bags from supermarkets and stores. 81% support the existing ban in South Australia showing public support grows once a ban comes into effect.
We have provided all state and federal environment ministers with the facts and a detailed policy position. While previous states such as SA and NT have banned plastic bags they created a major loophole by allowing so-called biodegradable bags - but these simply break up into small pieces (microplastics) and contain heavy metals. They need to be banned too.
Will our governments act on 25/11/16? Tell them you support a ban on single-use plastic bags.
What can you do?
Encourage your environment minister to support an effective ban, including the greenspin biodegradable ones:
- NSW Environment Minister Mark Speakman ([email protected] or (02) 8574 6390
- Vic Environment Minister, Lily D'ambrosio (lily.d'[email protected]) or (03) 8392 2100
- WA Environment Minister, Albert Jacob ([email protected]) or (08) 6552 5800
- Qld Environment Minister, Steven Miles ([email protected]) or (07) 3719 7330
- Phone or write to your local NSW state MP / local Vic state MP / local WA MP/ local Qld MP - and tell them you support a ban on lightweight plastic bag
- Spread the word.
The Plastic Bag Free NSW coalition has sensibly examined transitional issues and proposed:
A comprehensive education program and structured transitional period.
There can be exceptions on the use of ‘barrier bag’ style plastic bags at relevant retailers as there are issues associated with the sale and transport of perishable foods (e.g. meat, fish)
Sale of plastic bag bin liners may increase (as has occurred in other states with bans) PBFNSW have limited concern about the increase in the sale of plastic bag bin liners as they are highly unlikely to become litter. PBFNSW would support access to reduced cost 100% compostable bin liners and investigation and education about other alternatives.
The ban should extend to takeaway food outlets and smaller retail stores. Research highlights that such stores are a significant source of plastic bag litter as plastic bags are used for a short timeframe and for limited items.
Effective evaluation and monitoring must be implemented alongside the ban with scope to modify and extend the ban if necessary.
To know more: read our fact sheet about plastic bags.
You can contact Mike Baird by email or send him a letter.
The Hon. Mike Baird, MP
Premier of NSW
GPO Box 5341
SYDNEY NSW 2001
Dear Premier Baird,
Your announcement that the NSW government would introduce a Container Deposit System (CDS) in NSW in July 2017, is most welcome. For too long we have had the problem of littered drink containers in our streets, parks and ocean; as well as wasted resources.
I am concerned however to hear that the beverage industry is trying to replace a CDS with a plan that will only target a small amount of the bottles and cans that are currently not recycled.
It is critical that the NSW Container Deposit System is comprehensive and nothing short of a genuine world best practise system. This would mean that the vast majority of the drink containers are recycled. It would also create many significant opportunities for charities, schools and local sporting groups to earn much needed income. It’s a far better system than that being proposed by the beverage industry.
Our environment and community deserve this.
Please tell me you will give NSW an effective Container Deposit System.
Address (including postcode)
To print this letter, click here.
Today the Boomerang Alliance and Plastic Bag Free New South Wales presented a petition signed by 12,344 voters calling on the NSW Government to ban lightweight plastic bags. Recent plastic bag kills of rare marine life around Sydney, including a Leatherback turtle and a rare Risso's dolphin, have highlighted the need for action.Read more