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WA PREPARES NEW RECYCLING BUY-BACK PROGRAM

18-08-2016
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Following in South Australia's footsteps, Western Australia has tabled a recycling scheme for cans and bottles, refunding 10 cents per can recycled.

This recycling scheme will be introduced in 2018, where ten cents will be added to the cost of drinks that are sold in containers between 150ml and 3L, only to be refunded if they are recycled.

"The Government is now confident that what we are proposing will be strongly endoresed by the public of Western Australia, and will be successful in reducing litter and also in providing an incentive for recycling," said WA Premier Colin Barnett.

The system is targeting the sizes and kinds of containers that are mostly found littering the roadside, parks, and beaches, and will thus exclude containers that are typically consumed inside a venue or in the home. These include wine bottles, large bottles of spirits, and milk and juice containers.

This exclusion puts to rest Liberal MP Peter Katsambians's fears that the added 10c to the price of drinks would become a "great big tax" on items like milk and juices, making life more expensive for those already struggling to make ends meet.

The Labor government has been outspoken about its support for a recycling payback scheme, and while it is pleased that this legislation is going ahead, it has also said that the Government should have been supporting it since it was proposed, five years ago.

The program will operate primarily through 'reverse vending machines', where bottles and cans are inserted, and money is dispensed.

For each object, the machine will read the bar code, and determine whether or not it is an appropriate item to be recycled.

Queensland and New South Wales are planning similar systems, although dates for implementation are less certain.

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