Canberra Airport Retail reaches out with recycling message 

With thousands of people streaming through Canberra Airport each day, the retail team saw an opportunity to showcase drink container recycling to a vast audience. 

“Being at an airport, we have high exposure and high impact opportunities. In any one day, we could have 4,000 to 5,000 people flying out, so that is a lot of opportunities to show others how easy container recycling is to roll out,” said Canberra Airport Retail Site Manager Luke Tulloch

Dedicated ACT Container Deposit Scheme (CDS) branded purple bins have been placed in the airport’s six cafes and restaurants, and the Canberra Airport Retail team schedules collections by ACT CDS mobile collection service ReCollect when the bins are full using the ReCollect app. The app also allows them to track the number of cans and bottles they have returned through the scheme and amount raised through container refunds. 

As well as demonstrating what is possible to airport customers, they are diverting empty containers from landfill, and with the income they generate through the 10c refunds, they are investing in even more environmental initiatives.  

“I have had quite a few people reach out to me asking for more details on the ACT CDS program and how they can get involved.

“There is a lot of awareness about the emissions caused by planes, and knowing that we’re doing everything we can at the airport to combat that and make a difference is great,” Luke said. 

More than 39,000 containers have been returned through the initiative, with funds going towards initiatives such as installing low energy lighting at the airport. A portion of the funds raised have been donated to OzHarvest.

“The team decided to split the funds fifty-fifty between local charities and environmental activities within the airport,” said Luke. 

Luke and the team are thrilled to receive positive feedback from their customers.

“We receive comments like, ‘Oh, it’s great to see you’re recycling here in the airport’, and ‘I wish our café back home would do this’. It really makes our day when we hear this.” 

The ACT CDS is a partnership between the ACT Government, scheme coordinator Exchange for Change and network operator Return-It.