Instant expert

Container Deposit Legislation

Australian 10 cent coin

Credit: Wikimedia

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Ah, so it's just companies protecting themselves?

Not entirely.

Because your local council already collects drink containers, some groups think that adding a CDL will only be unnecessary duplication of recycling schemes.

Plus, the money from cans and bottles helps subsidise our kerbside recycling service. Without it, we may face higher collection costs and council rates or no recycling service at all.

Many of those opposed genuinely don't believe CDL will improve recycling and litter rates, but each side of the debate claims the other fudges the figures used to tout the benefits or pitfalls of CDL.

So what's being done?

At the Environment Protection and Heritage Council (EPHC) meetings in 2008, all state and territory environment ministers agreed to consider national options for improving recycling and decreasing litter, including CDL.

A formal report has been commissioned, and will be considered at this year's first Council meeting.

Meanwhile, in the push for a national scheme, groups such as Family First have proposed their own laws.

Those groups opposed to CDL have also suggested improving recycling systems to combat the problem of away-from-home waste and litter.

What can I do?

Recycle! And if you're out, take your cans and bottles home with you for recycling.

The thing to remember is that it is not how something is recycled, but whether it actually is.

Follow the debate in 2009 and write a letter to your local politicians to let them know your view.

Where can I read more?

The South Australian Environment Protection Authority
The Australian Food and Grocery Council
Clean Up Australia

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