Here in South Australia, we like to make strides toward positive changes that will set Australia apart from the rest of the world. One of the greatest additions we have made regarding these positive environmental changes is the state’s Container Deposit Scheme. This addition has lead South Australia to be the nation’s leader in the recycling of glass – something we are incredibly proud of.
There are varying reasons for this, but commonly, this is attributed to the Container Deposit Scheme. Studies have shown that states around the country are far more likely to take their glass waste to landfill rather than recycling. In an attempt to combat this, federal Senators have suggested moving the entire country to mimic South Australia’s deposit scheme.
The scheme involves a 10 cent rebate for glass bottles, cans and some milk cartons when they are taken to a recycling depot like Thorntons recycling. This implementation was a successful attempt to increase the amount of recycling that was being done by everyday South Australians and to also reduce litter, and therefore maintain the state’s beautiful aesthetic.
The implementation of this scheme led to South Australian recycling plant’s receiving up to 10 times more money for the resale of glass materials compared to the rest of the country. This was from the container deposit scheme, as it gave more incentive for individuals to recycle their glass, and therefore there was more of the material finding its way to recycling plants. Similarly, the process required the colour sorting of the bottles which was preferable to bottle manufacturing companies, as it makes the reconstitution process easier. Finally, the container deposit scheme means that less broken bottles are being recycled as broken bottles don’t receive the rebate, and therefore there is more glass to be sold.
The manufacture of new glass bottles produces up to 80% more carbon emissions than recycling. Recycling also preserves precious natural resources such as sand, limestone and fresh water. Therefore, the implementation of a nation-wide system that provides some incentive for users to recycle glass rather than take it to landfill will have incredible benefits for the environment.
Landfill space is decreasing, and even though there is a landfill levy in states like NSW, this isn’t present everywhere, and some NSW-based companies are even travelling to Queensland to dispose of glass to avoid this levy.
Adelaide and the rest of South Australia are pioneering a sustainable and incentive-driven glass and can recycling system that we could potentially see country-wide in the near future. At the moment, South Australia’s Container Deposit Scheme is the solution to the country’s glass-related worries.
If you are in South Australia and are not capitalising on this scheme, take your bottles and cans to Thorntons recycling Adelaide, where you will experience efficient and friendly service.