Aluminium Can Recycling

I thought I would give a Planet Ark campaign a bit of a plug.  Being a recycling advocate, I fully support this cause, and you can also win an iPad as well (Australian residents only)!  Read for the details below.

Recycle aluminium cans for the chance to win an iPad and surf classic tickets 

After cooling off with a soft drink at the beach this summer, consumers have the chance to win an iPad and tickets to Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic by recycling their aluminium cans and taking a photo of the recycling bin.

To enter the competition, people can simply recycle their cans in the public bins provided and send a photo of the recycling bin to Planet Ark.

Australians are good at recycling aluminium cans at home, but Planet Ark and campaign ambassador, eight‐time world surfing champion Layne Beachley, want to see more aluminium cans recycled at beaches, parks, workplaces, schools and other public spaces.

“Over the last few years many councils and local authorities have installed public place recycling bins on the streets and in parks,” says Planet Ark’s Head of Campaigns, Brad Gray. “Also, lots of shopping centres and food courts have set up bins.  All of this makes recycling aluminium cans easier.”

Over this party season, anyone who goes to outdoor events like concerts in the park, music festivals, open‐air cinemas and markets are likely to notice a range of different recycling bins.

“It’s great that organisers are embracing public place recycling,”  says Gray. “It’s important for everyone to  follow the instructions on the bins.  The more people that recycle properly the greater the environmental benefits, such as cutting both carbon emissions and waste.”

Making an aluminium can from recycled material uses just  5% of the energy needed to make one  from virgin  material.  Aluminium doesn’t degrade during the recycling process so cans are endlessly recyclable ‐ saving precious resources for years to come.

According to RMIT (Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology) by recycling six aluminium cans you can offset a 25‐kilometre train journey, a 17‐kilometre bus ride or a ten‐kilometre trip in an average size car.

“Every year, over $22 million dollars’ worth of aluminium is lost because cans are thrown into landfill,  so  any chance to reclaim them is important,”  says Gray.  “If your school or work doesn’t already have a system set up, why not make a resolution to organise one in 2012?”

Since Australians first started drinking out of aluminium in the 1970s more than 75 billion cans have  been  recycled.  Recycling these cans has not only contributed to environmental savings but also returned over $1.05 billion to the Australian economy.

“To show Australians there are recycling bins all over the country, Planet Ark is urging people to
take a photo of a recycling bin and send it to us for the chance to win an iPad 2 to the value of
$600 and four VIP tickets to the Commonwealth Bank Beachley Classic surfing event,” says Gray.

For more information and to enter the competition, visit  

I am always amazed at the lack of recycling bins around the city of Melbourne, especially in food courts and public places.  So many wasted resources that could be reused like the cans mentioned above.

I will be printing this off and posting it at work, so that folk who are too lazy to take those extra 5 steps to the recycling bin to dispose of their aluminium cans have a reason to change their behaviours.  I am forever fishing out cans from the landfill bin!  Here is a FAQ if you want to learn more about Aluminium recycling.

So please get onboard, where ever you may be.  This stuff is just common sense.


  1. says

    I agree with you all, however most people could not be bothered to even put the cans in a recycling bin, let alone collect them for cash. I think the point of the campaign is to encourage those who usually don’t bother to think again before throwing the aluminium into landfill instead of recycling. Maybe the iPad carrot may give them the incentive to change their ways!

  2. Anonymous says

    Melinda says
    Hi there I have been collecting alumimum cans for close to 25 years and find it very difficult to walk past a can no matter where I am. In the past I have walked/exercised myself and dog pick up cans and rubbish to make a cleaner environment and cashed them (I know not much) and then spent my money at op shops buying wool so that I can knit and crochet items for the homeless and many other charities. I even made this comment to my elderly mum many years ago and she didn’t know what to say being a lady who wouldn’t dream of picking anything up off the ground let alone be seen in a op shop. My family accept what I do though wouldn’t do it themselves. I have even mentioned can collecting to a fellow english blogger who spends a lot of time hiking that she could pick up cans.

  3. says

    Cheers Gavin.

    I think WA does something with cans, for money, community based but I haven’t seen or heard of it for ages.

    SA has a money back on bottles, but we don’t here in WA.

    And yes, all those resources… into landfill. Cans being just one of them.

  4. Dawn says

    Here in BC, you pay a deposit fee on all beverage bottles and cans, which you can redeem by returning them at almost any grocery store, or at the many “bottle depots” in any urban area. The amount per item varies depending on size from 5 to 25 cents. It’s a very popular way to fundraise here – Boy Scouts do 2 bottle drives a year in my community, going door to door to collect beer/wine/bottles, pop cans, etc. There are bottle/can bins in all mall food courts, airports, and many other public eating places throughout Canada. As Maggie commented, scavenging for bottles and cans is a common occupation for homeless or incomeless people here to get a few bucks together. I was actually researching something completely unrelated, and found this clip on youtube with a way to make solar panels with pop cans:

  5. says

    I am living in Tassie rt now.. but have to move back to the US.. We recycle aluminum cans,glass bottle and plastic bottles and turn them in for money. I found one place in Hobart that gives money for cans. Its not much.. In the US the homeless collect the cans off the road and parks and recycle them to get money. Thus they provide a service of cleaning up the enviornment.. I pick up cans along the highways and parks and beaches here and turn them in as I cant work til i get a new visa and come back to live with my fiance and get married.. but I would love to see the recycling programs get bigger..from aluminum to newspaper. We all need to bring up awareness that this is not a throw away society.. if you can use it twice.. then its a good thing.. if you can use it over and over.. even better.. if you can give it away for another to use..well it goes on and on.. Cheers Maggie

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