Nunavut residents are no longer being charged or refunded for bottle deposits due to the lack of rebottling or recycling facilities in the territory.
Calling the program an “awkward fit” that “doesn't make sense” in a statement to CBC News, the Nunavut Liquor and Cannabis Commission (NULC) stopped providing deposit refunds on July 31. The territory stopped charging deposit fees — 14 cents on beer bottles and 29 cents on wine and spirits bottles — four months ago, on March 31.
The NULC said Northern Collectables was the only business involved in the program, but bottles would “end up in local landfills anyways”.
Deposit fees of 15 cents will continue to be placed and refunded on aluminum cans, which are easier to ship out for recycling:
“There is more opportunity to collect and send them south for recycling,” said the NULC. “This is different than glass, which is heavy to ship and breaks too easily in transport for reuse.”
Deputy mayor of Iqaluit Janet Brewster recently commented that bringing plastics recycling to the city — population 7,740 — is “on [their] minds”.