Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Questions (56)

David Stanton

Question:

56. Deputy David Stanton asked the Minister for the Environment, Climate and Communications the work that has been carried out by his Department to date with respect to the introduction of a beverage container deposit and refund scheme; if there are plans to introduce such a scheme in the near future; if so, the details and timelines of such plans; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [8630/21]

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Written answers (Question to Environment)

The introduction of a deposit and return scheme (DRS) for plastic bottles and aluminium cans in 2022 is a commitment in the Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy which I published in September 2020. Development of the Action Plan was assisted by the deliberations of the Waste Advisory Group - a broad-based stakeholder forum which my Department chairs and which includes members from environmental NGOs, beverage producers, retailers, representatives from the waste industry and regulators. DRS was a specific topic considered by the Waste Advisory Group last year.

Since publication of the Waste Action Plan for a Circular Economy, my Department held a public consultation on design options for a DRS in November 2020 following which my officials held further bilateral engagements with various stakeholders including environmental NGOs, beverage producers, retailers and representatives from the waste industry.

A sub-group of the Waste Advisory Group has been established to input to the detailed design of the DRS and this group held its first meeting on 15th February. A second public consultation, focusing on the preferred model and draft regulations, will issue before the end of Q1 2021.