88 per cent of Irish in favour of ‘all-in’ DRS

88 per cent of Irish in favour of ‘all-in’ DRS

The results of a poll revealed yesterday (20 October) show that 88 per cent of the Irish public would be supportive of an ‘all-in’ deposit return scheme (DRS).

The poll was commissioned by environmental charity Voice of Irish Concern for the Environment (VOICE) and surveyed members of the public as to whether they would support metal cans, plastic water bottles, plastic milk bottles, glass bottles, coffee cups, and drinks cartons and pouches being included in a change to the Irish Government’s current proposed DRS.

Oisín Coghlan, Director of Friends of the Earth Ireland, said: “We’ve called for a deposit scheme in Ireland for years, but now we risk shooting ourselves in the foot by creating a programme that is nowhere near comprehensive enough.

“Today we call on the Government to design a scheme that includes all materials and a variable deposit level, similar to what is found in Scandinavia, to encourage sustainable choices.”

Mindy O’Brien, Coordinator of VOICE Ireland, said: “Our neighbourhoods, beaches and waterways are under siege from throwaway containers of all materials, including thousands of plastic and glass bottles, cans and coffee cups.

“The people have spoken. This poll shows overwhelming support for an ‘all-in’ DRS with a variable deposit levy.

“We must do this at the beginning of the programme so that we don’t create market disruptions that could sway producers and consumers away from more sustainable materials towards less environmentally suitable material solely because it is not included in the DRS or because the deposit was less expensive.

“We hope that this DRS will morph into a system that facilitates the take-back of reusable containers, such as glass bottles, to be collected, cleaned, refilled and reused over and over again. Not only is this good for the environment, but this is good for local business, keeping jobs in Ireland.”