Uplift campaign to Introduce a Deposit Refund System for drinks containers

Source: Greennews.ie

May 11th, 2017

According to VOICE (Voice of Irish Concern for the Environment): Container deposit and refund schemes have proven to be extremely successful at addressing the recycling of bottles and cans in other countries. These systems reduce waste, raise recovery rates, save money, create jobs, and enjoy high public support. 

While a deposit and refund system will be expensive to implement, its benefits greatly outweigh these costs. It is estimated that these systems have net benefits of over €100 million.

Many other European countries already have already implemented deposit refund schemes with very impressive results. The table below shows a comparison between Ireland and other countries where deposit refund schemes are already in place. Denmark, Finland, and Estonia have achieved upwards of 90% return rates with their schemes whereas Ireland’s return rates are approximately half of aluminium cans and one fifth of PET plastic bottles. If Ireland introduced a deposit refund scheme we could easily double our current rates of return on both cans and bottles and create sustainable employment opportunities while helping preserve the green environment that Ireland is known for.

Zero Waste Ireland has recently launched a campaign on Uplift to petition Denis Naughten (T.D., Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment) to Introduce a Deposit Refund System for drinks containers in Ireland. Germany, Denmark, Netherlands & numerous other countries have had successful deposit refund systems in place for years. Now Scotland is introducing one too. Ireland is drowning in

According to Zero Waste Ireland, we are drowning in litter and failing to take any action to curb the problem. Furthermore, we KNOW deposit refund systems work – with recovery rates of up to 95%. This is a clear-cut rational policy that is proven to work. We’re asking for your signatures to alert Minister Naughten. Please sign to show your support and combat litter and needless waste.

We believe we badly need a deposit refund system in Ireland to help tackle our worsening litter crisis. It would work like this. A small charge (eg. 10c) would be added to the price of drinks in cans, & glass & plastic bottles. When the container is returned to the shop the 10c is returned to the consumer. The returned containers are then reused or recycled. Abit like the plastic bag levy, this system is proven to be very effective, recovering up to 95% of containers. Imagine the difference that would make to our coasts, countryside, towns & cities.Zero Waste Ireland

About the Author

David Hayden

David is a contributor to the Green News. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in International Business and French from UCD as well as a Master’s Degrees in French literature and New Media from the University of California at San Diego and the Johns Hopkins University.