Latest News, News

VicRecycle welcomes legislation for CDS

VicRecycle has welcomed the introduction into Parliament of legislation that will establish the state’s container deposit scheme as a key component of the government’s circular economy policy.

“Along with the establishment of Recycling Victoria, this is a positive next step in building a successful container deposit scheme for all Victorians,” said VicRecycle chair Paul Klymenko. “Victoria’s CDS will generate more than $500m every year once it is up and running, facilitating the return of hundreds of millions of containers, so it’s important we get this right. A critical part of successful CDS is producer responsibility, which is why VicRecycle and its members, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners and Lion, are working closely with the Government.

“It’s positive that the bill references multiple network operators, but we remain concerned that appointing a monopoly private operator to run the CDS network is still being considered.

“Allowing competition will help drive up recycling rates and spread the benefits across the state, including more jobs in regional Victoria. Additionally, the sale of returned containers to recyclers should be done transparently on an open market, with proceeds reinvested into the running of the scheme.  These proceeds should not be gifted as profit to major private waste companies.”

Read more: Victoria’s CDS – who’s right and who’s wrong?

Klymenko said there are some further enhancements to Victoria’s CDS model that could be made to significantly improve the role of community organisations, charities, sporting clubs and small businesses, including:

  • 40 per cent of Refund Points to be run by social enterprises/local government (as occurs in WA).
  • A Scheme-Wide Donation System – where Victorians can donate their refunds virtually to any registered community organisation, charity or sporting club from every Refund Point across the state.
  • Social enterprises have the freedom to choose how to operate – either sort and count manually, or have access to a variety of verified counting and sorting equipment suppliers, rather than be forced to use counting machines provided by a single supplier.
  • The Government’s tender process for Refund Points to be designed so social enterprise organisations, small businesses, sporting clubs and charities are preferenced to maximise community benefits.

“Industry looks forward to working with the government to deliver a CDS that maximises recovery and recycling of beverage containers and benefits the entire Victorian community,” Klymenko said.