Has Germany Hit The Jackpot Of Recycling? The Jury's Still Out...

Only 1%-3% of non-reusable bottles are now not returned in Germany; recycling rates for cans are around 99%. This is in part due to an entire informal sub-economy that has grown around the recycling process. With its reputation as a recycling world champion, Germany is seen by many as the inspiration behind Britain’s new deposit return scheme (DRS) for bottles and cans. However, 15 years after its introduction, views still vary on whether the scheme is a case of bottle half-empty or bottle half-full. Sounds good, personally I think the U.S. DRS is on higher level than in Europe...

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Poor implementation is a problem. In Germany this was solved by a rule saying that shops must take back which ever bottles they charged deposit on. 

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Yes, I found few countries like UK, Norway, Finland with excellent solution for recycling bottles and cans. There's a private company in Sweden called Returpack which runs all the stations for recycling bottles and cans. These stations are found in or very near the major supermarkets and you usually use them in conjunction with going shopping. When you get to the check-out you can feed the receipt into a machine and the amount is deducted from your bill. There's also a button on the machines to give the deposits to charity too, if you want to do that.

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Yes, that's one of two ways to make people recycle -- make it supereasy for them or make them pay for not doing it. The supereasy approach works in Scandinavian countries but it won't work everywhere, that's for sure. How does Germany make people recycle? Does it use the same approach or the prod-in-the-back one?

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