Life Cycle Assessment of a Glass Beer Bottle in Ontario, Canada

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Rowden, Aja
Glass Bottles , Circular Economy , Life Cycle Assessment
The glass beer bottle return program known provincial-wide as the Bag it Back program (a branch of the Ontario Deposit Return Program) began as a partnership between the Beer Store and Ontario’s Ministry of Finance in 2007. Using a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) framework, the glass beer bottle was used as a case study with an emphasis on its disposal methods to identify the environmental advantages of a circular economy. Through the Bag it Back program, glass beer bottles will either be recycled into new bottles or refilled and reused. The aim of this project was to identify which result was more environmentally sustainable based on resource consumption and waste production. Using primary and secondary research, I have concluded that reuse of the bottle is the most sustainable option within the Bag it Back program. The only refillable glass beer bottle option available for breweries currently is the refillable amber bottle. This acts as a barrier to the success of a total circular flow and the full potential of the Bag it Back program within the context of environmental sustainability.
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