The Return for Change campaign has been developed by VOICE as a platform to both cajole and engage. Cajole because even though the Government has committed to introducing a Deposit Return Scheme in the second half of 2022, we have to make sure that we keep engaging with them and all of our public representatives to make sure that it is the very best DRS that we can get! You only get one shot at a first impression and we’re committed to getting it right.
Engage because it is vitally important that every man, woman and child the length and breadth of the country not only hears about the DRS before it is launched but also understands why it is being introduced and how to use it. In much the same way that the plastic bag levy affected to some degree our day-to-day behaviour, so too will the DRS. Through public engagement at all levels of society, the Return for Change campaign intends show how a high-performing DRS will benefit ourselves and the environment.
It’s worth bearing in mind that this isn’t some highfalutin new concept; in fact, Ireland has already had a DRS in the past. Many of us can remember returning glass bottles to shops and getting some small change in return. It worked before because it was simple and made sense. It is still simple and it still makes sense – it will work again. The plastic bottles and aluminium cans that our DRS will collect for recycling are valuable materials and we are aiming for collection rates of 90% within two years. It’s ambitious but the need is great. We can do it.
The Return for Change campaign has reached out to many different organisations and companies from around Ireland to join us as Partners. So far, we have Tidy Towns groups, artisans & artists, ECO-Congregations and Environmental organisations amongst others but we’re looking for more. If you would like to become a Partner, please don’t hesitate to contact us.