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Container Deposit System Feasibility Study Released

A report on the feasibility of introducing a Container Deposit System (CDS) in Tasmania has been released.

The study, which was undertaken by Hyder Consulting, examined Australian and overseas systems for recovering empty beverage containers, and assessed options for a Tasmanian system.

The Minister for Environment, Parks, Heritage and the Arts, Michelle O’Byrne, said discarded drink containers were a major source of recyclable materials and are also a highly visible part of roadside litter.

"All of us would like to see less litter and better recovery of valuable recyclable materials," Ms O’Byrne said.

The report complements work being done at the national level to investigate container deposit systems and other strategies for addressing packaging waste.

The Environment Protection and Heritage Ministerial Council recently instigated a Choice Modelling Survey to determine the community’s preparedness to pay for a national container/packaging recovery scheme.

Once the results of this study are available Council will then consider whether to progress to a full regulatory impact assessment for a national scheme.

"While the Hyder report shows that CDS has the potential to reduce littering and increase resource recovery, introducing it in Tasmania would be a complex and challenging process, requiring careful consideration by the community and Government.

"This would include the need for detailed cost-benefit analysis."

"The State Government supports a coordinated and consistent national approach to recovering beverage containers and will continue to work with other States to consider which of the national options offers the best way forward," she said.

"When the assessment of the community’s willingness to pay for national measures has been completed, the Tasmanian Government will be in a better position to consider whether the recommended CDS should be further investigated, or whether an alternative approach is warranted."

"We cannot make a reasoned decision about implementing a CDS in Tasmania without the essential data from the national study and cannot ignore the economies of scale and levelling of the playing field that could be achieved by a national CDS."

"I commend local government and industry for the valuable work they are already doing in recycling and litter reduction in Tasmania, and for their contribution to the Hyder study."

"Any further proposals to change the way beverage containers are managed will be fully discussed with industry and other stakeholders to ensure all relevant issues are examined, and that the changes complement existing recycling systems."

A copy of the Final Report can be downloaded from:

www.environment.tas.gov.au/whatsnew.