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CDL Awareness and Support Research Report
In September 2012 the EPA commissioned Harrison Research to undertake a survey to determine the level of community support, awareness of and participation in South Australia's Container Deposit Legislation (CDL) and to compare, where appropriate, the current project against similar work undertaken in 2004. The research was jointly funded between EPA and Zero Waste SA (ZWSA).
The overall objective of the survey was to:
- measure, where possible, the level of community support and awareness against the results of the 2004 survey
- utilise the outcomes from this general public research across SA to identify areas where improvements to the Container Deposit Scheme in South Australia could potentially be made
- provide input into the Standing Council on Environment and Water (SCEW) Packaging Impacts Decision Regulatory Impact Statement (DRIS) and associated documents. Options will be examined for increasing recycling and decreasing litter from packaging on a national scale, including national Container Deposit Legislation (CDL).
The survey found:
- awareness and support of CDL in SA remains extremely high, both at 98%.
- The scheme is perceived by the overwhelming majority to have been effective in reducing recyclable containers going to landfill (92%), reducing litter in South Australia (97%) and encouraging recycling/reuse of drink containers (98%), all showing increases since the previous study.
- 83% of respondents return at least some of their refundable drink containers to the recycling depot (with 69% of those respondents disposing of most or all), reflecting a significant improvement compared with 2004 when 60% said they returned all of their containers to the recycling depot.
- 98% of South Australians support a national container deposit scheme, with reduction of litter generally across national highways, parks and streets and beaches being the primary benefit thought to accrue from a national CDL scheme.
Container deposit refunds
Container deposit legislation (CDL) was introduced to South Australia in 1977 and has proven to be successful in reducing litter and promoting resource recovery.
The scheme allows South Australians to collect a deposit for each beverage container they return to a recycling depot.
Since 1 September 2008, the deposit on beverage containers is 10 cents.
Even if the container is marked ‘5c’, consumers can still receive a 10 cent refund.
Since the state government increased the refund on beverage containers, more South Australians have been encouraged to recycle. At the same time, there has been less litter on our streets and less waste sent to landfill.
What containers are covered by the scheme?
CDL captures a broad range of beverage containers that contribute to the litter stream, such as:
Containers less than one litre:
- flavoured milks
- fruit juices.
Containers up to and including three litres:
- water – still and sparkling
- soft drinks
- vitamin drinks
- sport drinks
- iced teas
- alcoholic sodas
- spirit-based beverages
- some wine-based beverages.
Plain milk and wine in glass containers remain outside the scope of the legislation, which also specifically exempts pure fruit juice and flavoured milk in containers with a capacity of one litre or greater.
If you are unsure whether a drink container attracts a deposit, check the labelling on the container.
When is the cut-off date for returning containers labelled ‘5c’?
There is no cut-off date for returning containers marked ‘5c’.
Application forms can be accessed online.
Zero Waste SA has a recycling directory which is South Australia’s guide to waste minimisation. Within these pages you will find out how you can recycle just about anything in South Australia.
Last modified: 13/12/2012 09:50 am