Containers for Change looks to expand – Are you ready to have your say?

 

Currently, the Containers for Change scheme accepts most aluminum, glass, plastic, steel, and liquid paperboard beverage containers between 150 ml and 3 L, but glass wine and spirit bottles are not eligible for refund. Making more containers eligible would make it easier for people to recycle and it would make it much quicker to sort and manufacture beverage containers into new products. 

The Containers for Change scheme was launched in 2018 to tackle the high level of beverage container litter and low recycling rates in Queensland. Since the launch it has already seen more than 6.2 billion containers recycled through refund points and $540 million in refunds issued.  

Container Exchange (COEX) is the not-for-profit organisation created to establish and run the scheme in Queensland. Their focus is on reducing litter, increasing recycling efforts, and helping the community to benefit through charities, community groups and not-for-profit organisations participating in the scheme.  

Key highlights from COEX’s latest performance dashboard: 

  • More than 6.2 billion containers have been collected since the scheme’s commencement in November 2018. 
  • August 2022 saw collections of 154 million, 15 million (9.5%) higher than same period last year. 
  • The scheme’s peak total monthly container collection rate (container refund point network + material recovery facility volumes) was 78.7% in January 2020. 

Currently, the Containers for Change scheme accepts most aluminum, glass, plastic, steel, and liquid paperboard beverage containers between 150 ml and 3 L. The containers not eligible for refund currently include: 

  • Plain milk containers of all sizes including plant-based milk substitutes. 
  • Glass containers that contained wine or pure spirits. 
  • Containers 1 L or more that contained flavoured milk, pure fruit or vegetable juice, cask wine or cask water. 
  • Concentrated/undiluted cordial or syrup containers. 
  • Sachets above 250 ml that have contained wine. 
  • Registered health tonics. 

Making more containers eligible for refunds would make it easier for people to recycle and much quicker to sort and manufacture beverage containers into new products.  

The Queensland Government has opened an online portal to gather community views on the possibility of growing the scheme. This consultation will close mid-February 2023, after which time a discussion paper will be released for industry to give feedback.  

Have you sayhttps://intheloop.des.qld.gov.au/proposal-to-expand-the-container-refund-scheme 

Sources: www.containerexchange.com.au; Media Release Containers for change looks to expand – Joint statement Premier and Minister for the Olympics The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk & Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Youth Affairs The Honourable Meaghan Scanlon 

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