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Core Charges

This is the same problem we have with used cars...and has already been solved in the automotive parts arena with the "core charge" system.

Photo of Will Rice
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Everytime you buy a part, they charge you an extra fee called a core charge.  This fee can be offset or recovered when you return the used part.  This incentivizes recovery and goes to fund any recycling labor.  

This could potentially fund work tasks that could create jobs for inmates, handicapped and special needs populations, and possibly even the elderly or kids looking for summer employment.  


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People are much more likely to engage if they have something at stake. Here, a deposit or core charge induces them to turn in their equipment when it dies or they desire a new one. In a way, this is a reverse incentive, but it works very well in practice.

Photo of bernhard

cool I never heard of that - seems to only exist in the US?
here in austria we had an very widespread bottle deposit system in the 90ies but it got pushed back over the years because it was "too inconvenient" for the consumers :(

Photo of Paul Reader

Here in Australia one state has been running plastic and glass bottle deposits for many years. There have been many suggestions lately to extend it country wide but Coca-Cola lobbies very heavily against it.
Many years ago there used to be a small deposit on glass beer bottles which would be returned for washing, sterilising and refilling. It was very popular, especially with scouts and junior sporting clubs who would collect and return them to support their activities. The practice died out with the introduction of aluminium cans without a deposit even though some beer still comes in glass bottles.
The challenge in re-introducing such a scheme is legislative because competition puts downward pressure on prices - so manufacturers won't apply deposits voluntarily.