As announced, in June of this year. a new version of the deposit project will be released. The system is intended to cover single-use aluminum cans and glass. While the draft has yet to be published, the industry has expressed concerns about the project.
Last week, at a conference at the Ministry of Climate and Environment (MKiŚ), Deputy Minister Jacek Ozdoba announced changes to the bill implementing the deposit system in Poland. According to the assumptions presented at the time, the system includes single-use plastic bottles for drinks up to 3 liters, reusable glass bottles for drinks up to 1.5 liters (previously proposed regulation) and single-use glass bottles with a capacity of up to 1.5 liters and aluminum cans up to 1l (new recipe).
We wrote more about the bill’s original assumptions in the article titled Multiple Bail Systems? The implementation law for the deposit scheme has been consulted. We wrote about the changes proposed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage in the article titled Cans and “monkeys” in the deposit system. The MKiŚ has proposed changes to the bill.
Deputy Minister Ozdoba announced that the new version of the bill – including the changes proposed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage – will be presented in June this year. The law isn’t here yet, but there’s already a deluge of responses…
Recycling of soda cans is more than 80% today
Jacek Wodzisławski, president of the RECAL Foundation, points out in his position that the inclusion of aluminum beverage cans in the deposit system means that alternative, and above all cheaper and more effective scenarios to increase the recycling level of aluminum packaging in Poland have been ignored. He explains that the recycling level of soda cans has been over 80% for years and that all aluminum packaging is around 60-65%, compared to 50% required by EU regulations. In the meantime, he points out that the deposit for cans will increase the recycling level of aluminum packaging by approx. 7-8 pp at best.
† On the other hand, closing the investment gap in waste management identified by the Council of Ministers in May 2021 could increase this level by more than 15 pp. The estimated annual cost of the deposit system is more than PLN 1 billion per year, while the total cost of closing the investment gap for aluminum is 100-120 PLN million by 2028 – writes Wodzislawski.
Also read: Bail in Poland: How much does it cost to put an idea into practice?
In his opinion, placing a deposit on soft drink cans will reduce the flow of aluminum waste by 2/3 and result in a loss of 600 million PLN, which currently goes to waste sorting plants, municipal waste management systems and commercial trade.
† This is 5% of the financial value of the entire waste management market with a waste stream that represents less than 0.5% of the mass of municipal waste – to explain.
† We are waiting for the final settlement, together with a complete regulation, which should be published in June. On the other hand, we treat the announcements from the Ministry of Culture and Heritage as a point of discussion, in which the size of the packaging covered by the deposit is only a part that in itself does not guarantee the effective implementation of the deposit. The announcement of flexibility for entrepreneurs in turn gives hope for a correct implementation of the deposit system for packaging – concludes Wodzislawski.
Single and reusable glass bottles
At last week’s conference, Deputy Minister Ozdoba emphasized that the proposed changes to the bill reflect the voice of industry and non-governmental organizations expressed during consultations on the previous draft.
However, as Konfederacja Lewiatan points out, the ministry has not taken into account all offers from entrepreneurs.
The Lewiatan Confederation indicates that Poland should have separate systems for single-use plastic packaging and metal beverage cans, and for reusable glass packaging. He explains that this is due to the large differences between reusable and disposable packaging.
† The difference is in the properties of the packaging collected and the intended use after collection – reusable bottles should be separated and returned to the owner as soon as possible for further use. On the other hand, disposable packaging goes to the recycler as packaging waste, so that it can be processed into raw material for the production of new packaging. – we are reading. † Meanwhile, the presented bill to introduce a deposit system tries to combine waste from one-way packaging with a reusable reusable glass bottle in one system. – added.
As highlighted by Agata Bator of the Lewiatan Confederation, reusable glass bottles are already being collected under current operating systems that are organized and financed by producers using this packaging. Bator adds that these systems should be continued so that only existing regulations need to be amended to make reusable packaging popular with marketers.
† Reusable glass bottles should be excluded from the deposit system, which is to be introduced by the proposed law. Single-use glass bottles should also not be used in this system. The system may only cover single-use plastic PET bottles and metal beverage cans Agata Bator points out.
Journalist, environmental engineer
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