Deposit to be applied to alcohol in glass bottles in Seychelles
The glass bottle scheme is the latest initiative by the government to better manage waste. (Lynzey Donahue, Flikr) Photo License: CC BY 2.0
(Seychelles News Agency) - A deposit of SCR2 will be applied to alcoholic drinks in glass bottles beginning in October in an effort to incentivise recycling and cut down on litter in Seychelles.
The levy to be introduced is part of a new scheme within the waste management strategy, the Director-General for Waste, Enforcement and Permit, Nanette Laure, told a news conference Tuesday.
“Before we were targeting all glass bottles but we relooked at our implementation and decided to start with alcoholic glass bottles. From there we will see if there is a necessity to implement it on non-alcoholic glass bottles,” said Laure.
The scheme was to be introduced in July, but following discussions with importers and other concerned parties, the date was pushed to October after importers said they needed more time.
The new scheme will encourage the public to redeem their glass bottles after use instead of throwing them in the trash or into the environment. Laure said that many bottles found in the environment today are those that contained alcohol.
The SCR2 deposit is part of the government’s initiative to better manage waste as the first landfill on Providence, on the eastern coast of the main island of Mahe, was closed and a second one opened in 2017 to cater for the amount of waste.
“The government is investing in a crusher which will be used to crush the bottle. The powder produced from the crushed glass bottles will be used as an alternative to cover the landfill as coral fill is not enough at times,” said Laure.
Alternatively, this fine dust can be used in the making of construction material.
People will be able to start redeeming those bottles towards June or July 2019 at SCR1. The director general explained that there is this difference in the date that the levy and redeem system is introduced as a grace period is needed to collect the funds.
“Furthermore, 50 cents of the levy will go towards the recycling facility where the glasses will be crushed and a part will go into the waste management fund and to the redeem centres,” explained Laure.
Talking about a possible increase in the price of alcoholic beverages in glass bottles, Laure said that the levy should not affect prices as alcohol is not a basic commodity.
“People should know their priorities and buy things that are more necessary to them,” said Laure.
The glass bottles redeem system is not new. Some local companies such as Waterloo, Seybrew and Takamaka Rum among others have a redeem scheme for their products and they will be exempted from the levy.
All landfills in Seychelles -- a group of 115 islands in the western Indian Ocean -- are government owned.
On Mahe, the landfills are found on reclaimed land at Providence and at Anse Royale in the south of the island. On Praslin, the second most populated island, a landfill is found at Amitié whereas on La Digue the landfill is found at L’Union.
On average, a landfill like the one that was closed received 45,000 tonnes of waste per year since 1999 with a maximum of 75,538 tonnes recorded in 2010. In 2005, it was estimated that the landfills on Praslin and La Digue received 3,500 tonnes and 670 tonnes respectively per year.