The bottle recycling masterplan.

I am a huge fan of the anything German. Good thing is that my bias is backed by obvious and substantial facts and reasons in many of the cases. I will be sharing the German method of recycling bottles and why it not only a successful plan, it is also an absolutely sustainable plan.

The system used in Germany is called ‘Container Deposit Legislation’. It requires a buyer of an item purchased in the bottle to pay a deposit for the cost of the bottle at the point of purchase. When the content of the bottle has been consumed, the consumer is expected to return the empty bottle and this deposit is either fully or partially refunded. This initial deposit is called ‘pfand’. The bottle can be returned to a designated or authorized redemption centre or the original seller.

bottle cdl
A reverse vending machine that scans bottles, collects them and prints a receipt to the total value of items returned which is then exchanged for cash.

There are several reasons why a container deposit legislation could be passed into law in a country, but the fundamental reason is often to encourage recycling. Other reasons are: to reduce litter on highways and in public places, to reduce the dependence on public entities or private companies for collecting such waste and recycling them, to extend the lifetime of landfills, i.e reducing the amount of waste that gets to landfills as refuse since bottles are exempted from the lot.

In Germany, the receipt not redeemed are used by the government are used to fund environmental problems.

In Nigeria, companies like ‘recycle points’ and ‘we-cyclers’ are changing the game of recycling in Lagos. We-cyclers in Lagos gives credit points to subscribers who return recyclable items and they are then rewarded with useful items.

wecyclers-tricycler
The We-cyclers machine collecting recyclable materials in Lagos

What is your take on recycling and how committed are you to recycling?

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