Community organisation The Kiwi Bottle Drive and supporters gathered on the steps of parliament this morning to deliver hundreds of messages in bottles, calling for the government to introduce a bottle deposit scheme.
Campaigners used fish and seabird masks to symbolise the plight of the ocean, which organiser Rowan Brooks says is being seriously harmed by plastic pollution.
“It’s time to listen to the sea – it’s turning into a plastic soup and we need to take responsibility now – bottle deposits are a vital solution to plastic waste.”
“We made a real statement this morning, carrying sea creatures made by school children and wearing seabird and fish masks. Our message to politicians is that the ocean is our responsibility and we need to step up and take action now.”
The bottles are the final delivery in a five-month-long campaign for the group which saw thousands of kiwis send messages in bottles Freepost to Parliament, calling for the government to take action on plastic waste.
Brooks says more than 8000 bottles have already been sent and it’s about time the government listened.
“There is strong support from the public and councils and we urge the government to listen to this.”
“The case for bottle deposits is overwhelming – Auckland council just released it’s cost-benefit report showing that bottle deposits would save the public purse up to $685 million over the next ten years – naming bottle deposits as a top priority for New Zealand. It’s time for the government to get the message.”
“Bottle deposit schemes are the proven best way to clean up the environment, skyrocket recycling rates, reduce litter and create cash for our kids and communities,” he says.
“We’ll be following up with the Ministry for the Environment, but our campaign will continue as need be, including delivering a petition early next year.”
“Our oceans and communities are calling for action on waste and it’s time the government brought in bottle deposits” Brooks says.
To find out more and get involved, visit kiwibottledrive.nz