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Container Deposit Schemes

Container deposit schemes (CDS) are programs that require a monetary deposit on certain recyclable containers such as soft drink, juice, milk, and alcoholic beverage containers. In Australian, container deposit schemes are in place in both South Australia and the Northern Territory. These schemes require consumers to pay an additional cost of 10 cents whenever purchasing beverages included in the legislation. The idea is that this 10 cents would be returned to the consumer whenever the container is returned to a designated recycling depot. However, though the scheme seems straightforward, there is actually much more cost to implementing this program nationwide. The first being the direct impact on the consumer— as the deposit at point of purchase and the further costs in packaging placed on an already stressed manufacturing sphere, will be directly passed onto them. Another downside is the inconvenience of returning containers to a specified depot instead of just placing it in a kerbside bin. On top of direct costs, tax payer money would additionally be used to fund the costs of the operation as well as the added expenses in handling caused by the requirement of trained staff or expensive technological systems to execute the returns.