10c Deposit Refund
PLASTIC BOTTLE RECYCLING
Plastic Bottle Recycling Process
Plastic bottles make life so much easier. They’re light, easy to hold, strong and hard to break. A plastic bottle is the best way to contain and retail many kinds of liquids, from spring water and soft drinks to engine oil and baby formula. Despite its many benefits; there is a problem with plastic bottles – what to do with them when they’re empty.
It can take up to 700 years for a single plastic bottle to biodegrade and break down; burying them in landfill is bad for the environment. The best solution to this problem is recycling.
AAA Recycling Centre gives 10 cent refunds for plastic bottles, glass bottles, cans and flavoured milk / juice cartons when they are brought to our recycling facility.
The plastic bottle recycling process begins when you return your empty bottles to AAA Recycling Centre:
- The plastic bottles are sorted by the type of plastic they’re made from.
- Next they are cleaned, to remove any liquid residues.
- The bottles are then ground up and shredded into flakes.
- Finally, they are melted down and formed into small pellets, each about the size of a grain of rice.
The pellets are bundled up and sold to manufacturers who melt and mould them into many different products. Many household items are made with recycled plastic, eg. plastic toys, tools and electronic gadgets.
Recycling is good for the economy and the environment – plus, it’s easy to do.
- It reduces the pollution caused by the chemicals used to make plastic bottles
- It reduces the amount of trash thrown into landfills
- Recycling also creates employment for many people at collection depots and at companies that produce new materials from the recycled plastic
If you’re in the Burton / Salisbury area of Adelaide’s Northern Suburbs and would like to recycle your plastic bottles for cash please call: (08) 8280 6350.
There is a 10 cent deposit and refund on most plastic beverage containers in South Australia, check the label to see if the deposit / refund applies.
Can I get a refund?
AAA Recycling Centre is one of Adelaide’s leading plastic bottle recycling facilities. Every week we receive thousands of plastic bottles that qualify for the South Australian government’s container deposit refund scheme.
How to tell if a plastic bottle is part of the deposit refund scheme
Under South Australia’s container deposit legislation plastic bottles marked with either:
– 10c refund at collection depots when sold in SA or
– 10c refund at SA/NT collection depots in State/Territory of purchase
can be returned to AAA Recycling Centre to collect a 10 cent refund for each plastic bottle.
Preparing plastic bottles for recycling
- Remove tops / lids
- Plastic bottles do not need to be rinsed
- *DON’T remove the labels
*Deposit refunds may be refused if plastic bottles cannot be identified.
Why it’s important to remove the top
There are 3 main reasons why AAA Recycling Centre asks customers to remove the caps from plastic bottles before bringing them in for recycling.
1. It speeds up the recycling process.
If lids are removed before you bring in plastic bottles for recycling, it speeds up the process for everyone, meaning we can sort
your returns and pay your refund much quicker.
2. After sorting, plastic bottles are compressed under high pressure into cubes called ‘bales’. If tops are not removed it can cause the bales to break.
If there is air or liquid inside the bottles because the lid is left on, the bottle will pop open causing the bale to fall apart; making storage and transportation of the bottles difficult.
3. The lids and bottles are made from 2 different types of plastic.
Different plastics melt at different temperatures and also go through a different recycling process due to their chemical composition.
The bottle is made from polyethylene terephthalate (PETE for short) displaying a symbol with a number 1. This plastic is in high demand by manufacturers who recycle it into new containers, carpet, furniture and polar fleece.
Inside the plastic lid the symbol will usually display the number 4 for low density polyehylene (LDPE for short) or number 5 for polypropylene (PP). When recycled, these plastics are often used to produce fence posts, plant pots, tubing, crates and automotive parts.
Plastic Recycling Symbols
Bioplastics – The Future of Plastic Bottles
Bio-based plastics help to reduce the dependency on limited fossil resources, which are expected to become increasingly expensive in the coming decades. As fossil resources become depleted, they are gradually being replaced with renewable resources. Currently, many of these renewable resources are annual crops such as corn and sugar beet or perennial cultures such as cassava and sugar cane.
Bio-based plastics also possess the unique potential to reduce Green House Gas (GHG) emissions or even be carbon neutral. Plants absorb atmospheric carbon dioxide as they grow. Using this biomass to create bio-based plastic products constitutes a temporary removal of greenhouse gases (CO2) from the atmosphere. These outcomes can be extended if the material is recycled.
Bio-based plastics can ‘close the cycle’ and increase resource efficiency. This potential can be exploited most effectively when renewable resources are used to produce materials and products, prior to being used for energy recovery.