Coke in court: a new low

Feature Story - 5 March, 2013
Unbelievable! This week Coca-Cola won its court case to crush a popular and proven 10 cent recycling refund scheme in the Northern Territory.

Despite the program already doubling recycling rates in the Northern Territory and operating successfully in South Australia for 30 years, Coke has taken the NT Government to court and effectively put the scheme on hold.

Not only is this a major blow to the environment and  the countless birds killed every year from swallowing plastic trash, it’s an outrageous win for Coke’s corporate self interest. As campaigner Reece Turner said after watching the court hearing on Monday:

“Any claim that Coke has on sustainability issues has gone out the window. This ruling the day after ‘Clean up Australia day’ is scandalous and leaves Coke’s corporate commitment to sustainability in tatters.”

The scheme’s a no brainer - read our blog on 8 reasons why. Yet despite the facts, Coke has run dirty tactics like bullying politicians to running public misinformation campaigns to stop Cash for Containers from going national. They even called the police on Clean Up Australia legend Ian Kiernan, our Greenpeace CEO David Ritter and Total Environment Centre head Jeff Angel when they visited Coke's Sydney HQ in protest on Monday morning.

Coke has gotten its way this time, but this struggle is far from over. All eyes are now on the upcoming Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting on 11 April in New Zealand. A national ‘Cash for Containers’ scheme is on the table for state and territory premiers to discuss - but with the beverage industry lobby pushing hard to crush the scheme we’re worried the scheme won’t pass.

Thanks to our supporters who’ve donated thousands of dollars, we’re now hitting back with full-page national newspaper ads exposing what Coke and others are up to, We’re also collecting more names for our 50,000 strong petition to hand-deliver to premiers at COAG.

Australians want this scheme - over 80% have voted in favour of it in recent polls. Make your support known by adding your name and sharing the petition with everyone.