Woolgoolga is the closest collection point

ELIGIBILITY: Most drink containers between 150ml and three litres. Exceptions include those that are consumed mostly at home and are recycled in council kerbside systems.
ELIGIBILITY: Most drink containers between 150ml and three litres. Exceptions include those that are consumed mostly at home and are recycled in council kerbside systems.

If you have been scratching your head about how the NSW Government’s Container Deposit Scheme, due to kick off on Friday, will work, then you are not alone.

And now the news comes that the nearest collection point for Nambucca Shire residents is Woolgoolga … a 150km round trip, which at 10 cents a container, is a very minimal return.

In Macksville, manager of Cellarbrations Liquor outlet, Karl Spear, said while in theory the idea of the scheme was a good one, he did not see how it was going to work given there had been no communication with people like himself, who were front line sellers of the affected products.

“We also have the hotel with large quantities of stubbies and cans – we haven’t been told what to do with all those units,” Karl said.

“They have said there will be vending machines but there is nothing here so far and apparently they will be connected to large businesses like Woolworths.

“We put our prices up on November 1 –  in order to fund the set up of the scheme initially. Those price rises came through the suppliers and we just passed them on to our customers. Everyone is in the dark.”

The NSW Government is taking a carefully considered approach to the CDS rollout, in order to make sure that it is a model that helps serve both the local community and the environment.

Member of Oxley, Melinda Pavey

Nambucca Shire Council’s General Manger, Michael Coulter, said the council had received no information either.

“It is quite extraordinary – for such a major change and a scheme of this scale, it is astonishing how little there has been in the media,” Mr Coulter said.

He said based on the South Australian experience, it was expected the quantities of recyclables in the yellow bins would drop.

“From what is collected the council will recoup funds via an agreement between Coffs, Bellingen and Nambucca Councils and the contractor outlining how to share the proceeds.

“Presumably there will be an audit of the recyclables from each shire, then the costs to the contractor of sorting the materials would have to be taken into account.”

He said  that no funding for the scheme would be forthcoming from the government until the agreement is in place and that any funds raised would probably be used to offset the council’s waste charges.

Promise - 500 collection points Reality - 237 Promise - 800 reverse vending machines Reality - 45

Shadow Minister for the Environment, Penny Sharpe

The Shadow Minister for the Environment, Penny Sharpe, says the government has botched the roll-out of the scheme leaving swathes of regional NSW without a collection point.

“The promise was for 500 collection points, in reality there are 237 and the promise was for 800 reverse vending machines, so far there are 45,” Ms Sharpe said.

“Regional communities will be paying more for every drink but have nowhere to get their refund.

“We fully support the scheme but businesses and bottlers and the public are paying the price for the Government’s incompetence.”

When these questions were put to the Member for Oxley, Melinda Pavey, her response was that: 

“The NSW Government is taking a carefully considered approach to the CDS rollout, in order to make sure that it is a model that helps serve both the local community and the environment.

“There are already reverse vending machines located in places from Granville to Glenorie and in places including Tumut, Medowie, Inverell and Casula. There are many more to come. Locations will be announced as they are finalised. This is a very big logistical exercise which is why the rollout.”

“Charities, sporting and community groups in Oxley will be able raise money as part of the NSW Government’s container deposit scheme. Community organisations will be able to collect and receive donated eligible containers that they can then refund at an approved collection point.

“The historic litter-reduction initiative will be an environmental game-changer that would help to reduce unsightly container litter in community parks, streets and waterways. Every year in NSW around 160 million drink containers are tossed into our environment, making up about 49 per cent of all litter volume, and costing about $180 million to clean up.”

WOOLGOOLGA: The town's headland is famous as an excellent whale watching spot

WOOLGOOLGA: The town's headland is famous as an excellent whale watching spot

THINGS TO DO IN WOOLGOOLGA AFTER YOU’VE DROPPED OFF YOUR BOTTLES:

As it's more than a two-hour round trip from Nambucca Heads, you might as well make a full day of it.

According to VisitsNSW.com, 'Woopi', as we know it, is bursting with beautiful beaches, good restaurants and plenty of fun things to do.

For example, the Falls Walking Track – starting at Woolgoolga Creek picnic area, this easy walk meanders alongside Woolgoolga Creek to Woolgoolga Creek Falls.

FOR INFORMATION ABOUT THE CDS: CLICK HERE