Queensland to introduce container deposit scheme

Issue 

The Queensland government will introduce a container deposit scheme from 2018, which will offer 10 cents for bottles and cans returned to a collection depot or placed in a reverse vending machine.

Environment Minister Steven Miles said Queensland had one of the lowest recycling rates in the country. A recent NewsPoll showed 86% of Queenslanders wanted a container deposit scheme.

Miles said Queensland was in talks with New South Wales to set up a single Container Deposit Administrator to cover both states.

"No-one wants an outcome where the rules that apply to a bottle of soft drink sold at Tweed Heads, are different to the one you buy at the Gold Coast," he said.

The NSW model to be introduced next year includes most 150ml and three-litre containers, but not plain milk, pure juice or wine bottles.

Toby Hutcheon from recycling advocacy group Boomerang Alliance said the National Litter Index showed Queensland was the most littered mainland state in Australia, tossing away 2.4 billion bottles and cans every year.

He said recycling schemes are used around the world and have proved to slash litter rates, dramatically increase recycling and create hundreds of jobs in collection and reprocessing.

He estimated that community organisations in Queensland could share in more than $25 million every year from deposits and handling fees.

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