Bottles, tins, lids, what's the score?
Bottles, tins, lids, what's the score? Navarone Farrell

Containers for Change: Lids on or lids off?

CONTAINERS For Change has cleared up a contentious point about cashing in on your recycling: is it lids on, or lids off?

While Container Exchange processing sites can ask people to remove lids, containers with lids on are still able to be processed and recyclers who submit them are entitled to a refund.

READ MORE: A full list of drop-off locations in Ipswich

A Container Exchange spokeswoman has cleared the matter up, responding to a site manager who said a number of sites could not process containers with lids on and people were "missing out on money".

The spokeswoman said this was incorrect.

"Under the Waste Reduction and Recycling Act 2011, operators must pay a refund for eligible containers presented at a refund point," she said.

She said lids needed to be removed for safety reasons before containers could be processed but, if customers neglected to do so, operators were responsible for removing the lids.

"However, if bottles are returned through a bag drop-off site and customers aren't aware of this requirement, the lids should be removed by the operator when being counted," she said.

Processing site manager Robert Evelyn said the site's requirement for lids to be removed was due to a number of reasons, but they would comply with the legislation.

"We ask that lids be removed for safety reasons as bottles might burst with lids left on and the lids are a different kind of plastic," Mr Evelyn said.

"But, we will comply with any directive from Container Exchange."

He said the sites he managed had the rule to help speed things up.

"If there are 1000 bottles to count and then we also have to remove lids, it slows the whole process down."

The COEX spokeswoman said COEX had issued a notice to operators.

"Container Exchange has issued an urgent notification to all operators to ensure they understand the rules around the issue and are applying them correctly," she said.

Customers who believe they have been underpaid a refund for leaving lids on are invited to call 13 42 42 to discuss reimbursement.

Peter Farrer collects bottles in his two 44 gallon drums and takes them down to the Laidley collection site every few months for a refund. He keeps a bin nearby so he can easily dispose of the lids.
Peter Farrer collects bottles in his two 44 gallon drums and takes them down to the Laidley collection site every few months for a refund. He keeps a bin nearby so he can easily dispose of the lids. Ebony Graveur

GET YOUR TOP OFF

WHILE some find the process confusing, Peter Farrer has a system set up at his Hatton Vale property regardless of the legislation.

"I have two 44-gallon drums and I just fill them up and take them to the Laidley dump," he said.

"Beside the drums I have a bin and I take the lids off and chuck them in the bin."

Since the scheme launched and with the help of his grandchildren, he has turned in over 20,000 bottles.

"To me it was quite simple so I registered online," Mr Farrer said.

"I read the terms and conditions and it explained what you could and could not dump. I thought it was quite straightforward.



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