European Commission has commissioned Eumonia to study establishing a harmonised European deposit refund system for metal beverage cans

January 23rd, 2011 by Victor

The European Commission has recently commissioned a study that is being carried out by Eunomia, to investigate the feasibility of setting up a harmonized beverage can deposit scheme at European level.

Even though Guernsey is outside the EU, an EU-wide metal beverage can deposit refund system would have implications for Guernsey’s purchase and recycling of these items.

The main objective of the study is to collect and evaluate the options and elements for a European deposit refund system for metal beverage cans. These evaluations will include environmental, economic, social and administrative burden-related issues and take into account the smooth functioning of the internal market.

Such a system could be a powerful tool to overcome the problems concerning beverage packaging and could help solving littering issues, low performance of green dot systems as well as recovery of valuable materials. It should also help groups all over Europe advocating for national deposit systems.

During the course of the project four workshops will be run in order to gather information from stakeholders regarding the nature and scale of existing problems, and to identify solutions.

It is possible to join the consortium and take part in the workshops by registering interest. You can do that by emailing Tim Elliott at DG-EnvDRStudy @

The project duration is 12 months and it will be completed in November 2011. The main elements of the study are as follows:

1. Setup project website;

2. Identify nature and scale of the problem. This will be carried out through a comprehensive literature review and through conducting a number of stakeholder workshops in critical areas.

3. Develop a set of options to address the issues identified in the first stage of the project. This could be specific local solutions or EU wide harmonisation of collection systems for metal beverage cans. The options will be developed in relation to the nature and scale of the problem. The key options to be assessed include:

  • Analysis of impacts of the introduction of one European refund system for metal beverage cans;
  • Analysis of impacts of the harmonisation of all the existing refund systems for metal beverage cans; and
  • Analysis of impacts of the introduction of a number of harmonised cross-border refund schemes for metal beverage cans.

4. Assess the advantages and disadvantages of each option. This will include a qualitative assessment of relevant factors, and a full cost benefit analysis, as far as the data allows. All required data will be collected during this part of the project. Once the options have been assessed implementation plans for each beneficial option will be developed.

5. A web-based stakeholder consultation will then be undertaken. The implementation plans for each option will be the main focus of the consultation. The consultation will run from around mid August to late September 2011.

6. A final stakeholder workshop will be run in Brussels to present the findings of the study and debate the key issues. This workshop will be held in late October 2011.

The full results of the study will then be reported on and published.

More information available at:

1 Response to “European Commission has commissioned Eumonia to study establishing a harmonised European deposit refund system for metal beverage cans”

  1. rosie dorey

    This would be brilliant. I remember staying with my sister in Maine USA way back in the 70’s when we campaigned for a deposit on all bottles….. plastic and glass. It eventually went through and overnight, all the discarded bottles in the verges and in the hedges disappeared never to reappear!

    I so wish Guernsey could have shown the foresight and vision to bring in a deposit system for bottles / cans years ago. Despite talking for decades about our ‘waste problem’, little has been achieved in stopping the creating of waste before it happens.

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