Left – Right, James Dorney – CEO TOMRA Cleanaway; Ryan Buzzell, Director TOMRA Cleanaway; David Clancy, Director TOMRA Cleanaway; Danielle Smalley, CEO Exchange for Change celebrate 4 years of Return and Earn

“Since commencing in 2017, Return and Earn has continued to demonstrate what a world class container deposit scheme is to the community; convenient, accessible and easy to use.”

Happy Scheme-Anniversary Return and Earn!

4 years ago on 1 December 2017, the NSW container deposit scheme, Return and Earn commenced with TOMRA Cleanaway contracted to deliver statewide return point operation, logistics, commodity recycling and sales across the state.

In a diverse and expansive geography, impacted by environmental challenges; droughts, bushfires and more recently floods and incredible social and economic challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic – the container deposit scheme and consumer participation and support has been unwavering.

“Civic pride, passion and enthusiasm for delivery of our operations has been unwavering over this period also from all our Teams across network operations – truck drivers, cleaners, technicians, customer service officers, admin support – the list of staff involved in delivering this fantastic scheme goes on! TOMRA Cleanaway is incredibly proud to be delivering Return and Earn in NSW.” – James Dorney, CEO TOMRA Cleanaway

Despite these challenges, there have been many highlights. Over the year we have been able to come together to celebrate the launch of numerous metro and regional return points, each have increased community reach for Return and Earn, enabling greater participation and opportunity to redeem millions of eligible drinks containers.


Left – Right: Brandon Barton MD, Lane Cove Return and Earn; The Hon. Matt Kean, Treasurer, and Minister for Energy and Environment, Member for Hornsby; The Hon. Anthony Roberts, Minister for Counter Terrorism and Corrections and Member for Lane Cove; James Dorney, CEO TOMRA Cleanaway


Partnerships with TOMRA Cleanaway have continued to flourish and stimulate fantastic charity and donation outcomes, especially important during the impacts of the pandemic. Since commencement of Return and Earn, $28.5 million has been raised for charity and not-for-profit groups via donations and handling fees for hosting return points. These funds are redistributed to the community to aid them with activities, whether social, environmental, or sporting.


Left – Right, Casey Ralph, CEO KARI Foundation; Beau Champion, Head of Partnerships, KARI Foundation; Vesna Davidovic, Network Development & Compliance Manager, TOMRA Cleanaway; Michelle Mandl-Keating, Communications & Engagement Manager, TOMRA Cleanaway; James Dorney, CEO TOMRA Cleanaway; Cain Slater, KARI Foundation at the KARI Foundation Thank You Dinner and Awards November, 2021.


James Dorney, CEO of TOMRA Cleanaway heralded the scheme anniversary, highlighting the valuable outcomes being achieved in communities through our dedicated staff and return point operators.

Performance from all operational Teams servicing the NSW network is continually high resulting from the team operating out of a sense of purpose and pride. October 2021 delivered a new milestone and challenge for all our Team members, with 225 million containers returned through the network from a standing start.

Over the month, TOMRA Cleanaway’s Customer Service Centre also celebrated a new milestone, responding to over 25,000 customer enquiries!


Michael Clark, CDS Metro Driver Cleanaway stands proudly with his truck for NAIDOC Week, July 2021

This phenomenal network and scheme performance is underpinned by the support and engagement of the NSW community, with 77% of NSW adults having used the scheme.

The network of over 620 return points in NSW provides the opportunity for the community to engage in the scheme and this could not be achieved without our return point operators. Recognising the importance of the third party operators of return points, James said “Our valued return point partners are to be commended for their involvement in Return and Earn and continued support over the years. Many of our sites joined us from day one of the scheme and have been instrumental in developing community links.”

“Since commencing in 2017, Return and Earn has continued to demonstrate what a world class container deposit scheme is to the community; convenient, accessible and easy to use.”

TOMRA Cleanaway’s partner organisations, delivering the scheme in NSW are scheme coordinator, Exchange for Change and NSW government represented by the NSW EPA, each organization is integral to delivery of Return and Earn.

The last four years of operation have established a sound platform for the future success of the Return and Earn Container Deposit Scheme and the TOMRA Cleanaway network.

Summer of 2021-22 will be busy as NSW continues to emerge from lock-downs and celebrate together – we are looking forward to another bright year ahead.