Greenpeace has launched a new crowd-funded campaign to protest the federal court’s decision to support Coca-Cola in its fight against a Northern Territory recycling plant.
Three days ago the Australian federal court sanctioned the dismantling of a Northern Territory 10c deposit recycling scheme after Coke argued the initiative, introduced in January last year, was costly and ineffective.
The scheme was similar to one which has been running in South Australia since 1977.
The soft drink company argued the extra 10 cents added to its products was unfair to consumers, despite the fee being refundable.
The Greenpeace campaign is running in Fairfax papers and shows what Coke’s “bullying” means for the environment.
The full-page ads in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald were entirely funded by individual donations.
Greenpeace said that in two weeks over 50,000 people had already signed up to the campaign calling on politicians to implement a national ‘Cash for containers’ scheme.
Depicted in the ad is a flesh-footed shearwater from Lord Howe Island, which starved on a full stomach – full of plastic waste it had mistaken for food.
According to Greenpeace, two-thirds of seabirds are affected by plastic trash which pollutes our waterways, rivers and end up in the ocean.
Other species known to be impacted by plastic pollution in our oceans include turtles, whales, seals and fish and Greenpeace asserts that one of the biggest culprits is creating this plastic pollution is the beverage industry.
“Coke is currently trashing a popular and proven 10 cent recycling refund scheme and is the main blocker standing in the way of a national scheme,” said Greenpeace. “ ‘Cash for containers’ has run successfully for 30 years in South Australia, where recycling rates are almost double those across the rest of the country.”
Greenpeace campaigner Reece Turner said: “The spotlight is now on the State premiers… to stand up to Coke’s relentless bullying and take action to protect the environment from Coke’s blatant corporate self-interest.
“With only five weeks until Environment Ministers meet on 11 April to decide on a national roll out of ‘Cash for Containers’, these premiers must decide whether they side with Coke or the community.”