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National day of Action calls on government to combat plastic

National day of Action calls on government to combat plastic bottles

For immediate release; 27th November, 2018

Cuba Street’s iconic bucket fountain in Wellington will be filled with plastic bottles today, along with similar events happening in Auckland through to Dunedin, as part of a nationwide day-of-action calling on New Zealanders to combat plastic pollution by supporting the call for a cash-for-trash bottle deposit scheme.

Publicity and outreach events will be taking place in big city centres and small communities, where the public can come and exchange empty plastic bottles for 20c refunds.

The day-of-action is part of a wider movement to get the government to introduce a cash-for-trash bottle deposit scheme as a solution to plastic waste, led by advocacy group The Kiwi Bottle Drive.

Local organiser Holly Dove, in Wellington, says a bottle deposit scheme is key to changing how we think about waste.

“If drink bottles and cans have value they won’t end up in the ocean or littering our communities,” she says.

“With a bottle deposit scheme we’ll get onshore recycling and provide green jobs for kiwis, plus it means great fundraising opportunities for kids - this is a solution which protects the planet and makes our lives better too,” Dove says.

Across the country today New Zealanders will be taking part in pop-up events and collecting petition signatures.

National coordinator Rowan Brooks says the idea is to draw attention to this issue before the group delivers its petition to Parliament the following week.

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“Our petition goes to Parliament on December 4th and the nationwide day-of-action is a fun way to drum up awareness of this issue; groups will be out in public places today, promoting the petition while giving passers by a chance to get cash back for something otherwise considered trash.

“There’s huge support for this campaign already amongst kiwis who either fondly remember collecting bottles for pocket money as kids, or have been impressed by the effectiveness of schemes they’ve seen on holidays - in places like Germany,” he says.

“We just want the government to get the message too - that this is a vital zero waste tool and we need it now more than ever."


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