Senator Whish-Wilson said that the decision by the NSW Government to adopt a container deposit scheme was a big win for community campaigners around the country, and makes it inevitable that Tasmania will eventually adopt a similar popular scheme.
Senator Whish-Wilson said, “With NSW, the state with the largest population, joining in with South Australia and the Northern Territory in adopting a cash-for-containers scheme other states will fall into line like dominos.
“It is in the interest of industry and the states to work towards unified schemes, otherwise you will have all sorts of confusion from state to state in terms of labelling and laws.
“I expect Queensland, the ACT and Victoria to quickly take up the scheme, leaving Tasmania behind as the odd state out.
“Tasmania is the nation’s tourism hot spot on the back of our clean green reputation, but we have some of the filthiest roadsides in the country littered with beverage containers.
“Our beaches and waterways are also being choked with cans and plastic bottles, which make up more than half the plastic found by volume on Australian beaches.
“Tasmania would benefit from implementing a cash-for-containers scheme, including a projected 300 new jobs, new revenues for councils and savings for current recyclers. The Tasmanian Liberals are simply sprouting old beverage industry propaganda opposing such schemes, and are standing in the way of the implementation of a win-win policy,” he concluded.
Senator Whish-Wilson recently initiated a landmark Senate Inquiry into the threat of marine plastics, which delivered overwhelming evidence in support of recycling refund schemes. There was cross party support for the report’s strong set of recommendations, including the adoption of a national container deposit scheme if the states refused to act by 2018. This report, Toxic Tide: the threat of marine plastic, played a pivotal role in the NSW state decision yesterday.