WA Introduces Container Deposit Scheme, get 10 cents back per bottle and can

Western Australians now have a financial incentive to recycle their empty drink cans and bottles. The WA Government has announced it will implement a container deposit scheme in mid-2018. As a result, recycling and littering in the state is anticipated to drastically improve. Empty cans and bottles with the scheme label can be deposited into an approved reverse vending machine positioned at parks, beaches and other public spaces throughout WA. For your contribution, you will be reimbursed with 10 cents back per recycled item. Who doesn’t love getting a little cash back?

This new announcement brings WA into line with New South Wales, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory, that have all announced they will be implementing their own container deposit schemes. South Australia and Northern Territory have had existing container deposit schemes in place for years. 

How does the container deposit scheme work?

Once the empty drink container is deposited into a reverse vending machine, it will scan the scheme label and item bar-code and give a refund back of 10 cents per item. Almost all drink cans, bottles and containers consumed away from the home are eligible for the refund as these are most commonly seen as litter. The reverse vending machine accepts:

  • Soft drink cans and bottles
  • Water bottles (both plastic and glass)
  • Small flavoured milk drinks and sports drinks
  • Spirits-based mixed drinks and beer bottles and cans ranging from 150 mL to  3 litres in volume

While the reverse vending machine does accept a lot of cans, bottles and containers it reportedly does NOT accept:

  • Wine and spirit bottles, wine and water casks, wine satchets
  • Plain milk (and substitute milk) containers, flavoured milk containers
  • Pure or concentrated fruit or vegetable juice containers one litre or more
  • Cordial containers
  • Registered health tonics.


Why do we need a container deposit scheme?

The Australian National Litter Index announced that a significant proportion of litter disposed on Australian streets and beaches are drink containers. Litter has obvious negative impacts including harming natural environments and damaging wildlife. Furthermore, litter is also unsightly and does not reflect well on Australian tourism. Therefore the government has imposed a container deposit scheme to eradicate these problems. 


Due to WA Minister for Environment and Heritage Hon Albert Jacob’s tireless efforts, a container deposit scheme is finally possible in WA. “A container deposit scheme is a win for the environment, jobs, the community and the recycling industry” Mr Jacob said. Mr. Jacob is a passionate advocate of clean living and a healthy lifestyle. Because of his passion for the environment, Mr. Jacob encourages people to explore the marvels of Mother Nature and nurture the abundance and beauty Australia has on offer.


Students, let’s help keep Australia beautiful

What do you do to protect the environment? Do you take a bus, train, cycle or walk to uni or work? Do you enjoy gardening, exploring nature or going to the beach? Furthermore do you participate in events such as Clean Up Australia Day or other charitable efforts? 

Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

Frequently Asked Questions about the Container Deposit Scheme: https://www.der.wa.gov.au/images/documents/our-work/programs/CDS/Container_Deposit_Scheme_FAQs.pdf

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