Rosalie Woodruff MP | Greens Environment spokesperson
The Greens welcome Queensland's commitment to introducing a container deposit scheme by 2018. We hope the Hodgman Government won't let Tasmania be left behind.
Cash for container schemes reduce the amount of beverage containers that end up in the waste stream, the waterways and, eventually, the sea. They help reduce landfill, waste disposal costs and are often used by community groups, like scout troupes, for fundraising.
Container deposit legislation means people in South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and the Northern Territory will get 10 cents back for every drink container they return. It's good for the community and the environment.
Unfortunately, Environment Minister, Matthew Groom, has resisted moving to a cash for containers scheme in Tasmania. So far he's sided with the beverage industry, and refused to implement container deposit legislation.
It would be cost effective for Tasmania to participate in a national scheme, or to join with other states. Minister Groom should make sure we're not left at the bottom of the pile and introduce container deposit legislation in Tasmania.
Last year the Senate Environment and Communications Committee called for a container deposit scheme to be introduced across the nation to eliminate beverage rubbish. Their recommendation was that the Federal Government should compel states and territories to introduce container deposit scheme legislation, if they hadn't done it willingly by 2020.
We hope the Liberals realise how crucial these schemes are and act now, not when their hand is forced by the Federal Government.