Bottle deposits aren’t anything new where I’m from, and I believe the small neighborhood stores still do this over here. When I was a kid and the school cafeteria gave us refunds for each bottle of soda we brought back, I had no idea what the money was for.
Bottle deposits go back a long way, and they were first implemented to keep litter under control and it was also a cost-cutting measure for beverage companies, who would take back the bottles, wash them, and refill them with beverages. Now that is a nice takeback plan, except with the advent of disposable drink containers and the issue of expenses for each returned container, offering bottle return deposits is something only a few states in the U.S. are practicing, most notably Oregon, and is also being considered by Australia.
A good idea? Probably, since getting back the money they spent will spur some people to return their beverage containers to the stores. But it would be loads better if people would return the containers on their own steam, and if beverage companies actually cared enough to take back these items.