Money for old bottles scheme coming to Galway

Green Party candidate Joyce Matthias

Green Party candidate Joyce Matthias

Everybody in Galway will have a chance to get cash when they recycle old bottles and cans thanks to a new scheme introduced by the Green Party which begins today Thursday.

To use this scheme, you simply have to find one of the machines that have been installed in almost all supermarkets across the county. These so-called reverse vending machines not only collect your plastic bottles and cans but pay you to do so. This is the Deposit Return Scheme introduced by Green Minister Ossian Smyth and it is aimed at reducing litter and boosting recycling as part of the circular economy.

The scheme was warmly praised by local Green Party candidate Joyce Mathias.

“We need to replace our throwaway culture with a circular economy that recycles and reuses material,” she told the Advertiser.

“It is awful to see beautiful places like Galway ruined by litter, so this scheme will help motivate people to clean up our town. Only 23 per cent of plastic bottles are recycled in Ireland and we want to take this to 90 per cent.

“The reverse vending machines couldn’t be easier to use. You just go to your local store like Tesco in Fr Griffin, Lidi in Doughiska and numerous locations in Galway and drop off your plastic bottles and cans. There’s no sign up required, it’s simple and convenient. Similar schemes have had great success in Europe, so now is our chance to get rubbish off our roads and into the reverse vending machines,” added Ms Mathias.

It is estimated that 1.9 billion plastic bottles and cans are bought every year in Ireland. Over 4,000 retailers have signed up to participate in the scheme and 3,500 reverse vending machines are being installed across the country.

The scheme is funded by a deposit of 15c on plastic bottles and cans of 500ml or less and 25c on containers larger than 500ml. This deposit is claimed by returning the containers to any participating store, even if they were bought in a different store. Consumers can choose between receiving the deposit as a store voucher or as cash.


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