Media Releases | 2nd Nov, 2009

Green group says the beverage industry is “frothing at the mouth”

Monday 2 November, 2009

Environment Victoria has today refuted claims by Fosters, Coca-Cola and Lion Nathan that a national container deposit scheme would be too expensive.

Environment Victoria campaigner Fraser Brindley said suggestions that people would pay 14¢ more for a can of drink were “misleading and wrong” and that the beverage industry was “frothing at the mouth”.

Mr Brindley said the beverage industry’s claims ignored that the scheme was based on a 10¢ deposit. “Under a container deposit scheme, you get 10¢ back,” he said. “That’s the whole point of it.

“Administration costs would be much less than what was claimed by the beverage industry because their figures don’t take into account the recycling value of the material collected.

“The Victorian Government puts the cost of a container deposit scheme at about $30 million. Victorians buy over 3 billion drinks each year, so the cost works out to be 1¢ for every bottle and can.”

Mr Brindley said the beverage industry was trying to stop a popular and successful recycling scheme from being introduced. “Public support for a container deposit scheme consistently runs above 90%,” he said.

“A container deposit scheme would provide a direct incentive for people to recycle beverage containers. Putting a monetary value on empty cans and bottles is a sure fire way to increase recycling, especially away from home.”

The recycling in Victoria rate for drinks consumed away-from-home is just 19 per cent, compared to about 60 per cent for drinks consumed at home.

Environment Ministers will be meeting in Perth this Thursday 5 November to decide on the next step towards a national container deposit scheme. Environment Victoria urged the Victorian Government to get behind the overwhelming public support for a national container deposit scheme.

Mr Brindley also urged the Minister Jennings to support a national television and computer recycling scheme being considered at the same meeting.

“The infrastructure needed for a containers deposit scheme will be similar to that needed for electronic waste recycling,” he said. “The Victorian Government should get behind both of these schemes to increase recycling rates and create jobs.”

For further comments:

Fraser Brindley on 03 9341 8103 or 0417 557 477.