Consumers in California are getting more of an incentive to recycle their beverage containers. The state has said it will raise the rates paid to people who turn in their used soda cans and water bottles.
The redemption rates will increase by 3¢ for plastic bottles and 3¢ for aluminum cans. The rate per container remains the same at 5¢ for containers under 24 ounces and 10¢ for containers 24 ounces and above.
RePLANET, a company that operates recycling centers in California, said previous reimbursement rates were insufficient to support its collection program, forcing it to temporarily deactivate its automated recycling machines last summer. Following complaints from customers, rePLANET reactivated the machines and the state of California began to recalculate the rates, according to Recycling Today
Now it makes more economic sense for customers to line up outside recycling centers to cash in their items. Often in California, lines are long and people have to wait a long time to redeem their recyclables.
“Recycling beverage containers makes more sense than ever before,” Matt Millhiser, rePLANET marketing director, told the magazine. “The state’s new redemption rates, combined with our innovations in automated technology, make recycling more financially rewarding and convenient than any time in California history.”
Effective March 1, 2012, the CRV refund price per pound are:
The California Grocers Association is expressing support for a proposed law in the state legislature that would introduce a state-wide standard for disposable shopping bags.
The California State Assembly passed legislation that would, if adopted by the Senate and signed by the Governor, begin a phase-out of all single-use plastic grocery bags at supermarkets, pharmacies, convenience and liquor stores in the state.
The bill is aimed at reducing the more than 19 billion single use grocery bags generated in California annually. Consumers will be encouraged to bring their own reusable bags. Paper bags with high levels (40% postconsumer) recycled content would also be available for their actual cost, which currently ranges between 5¢ – 8¢ a bag.
Californians Against Waste (CAW) joined Assemblymember Julia Brownley and a coalition of environmental groups, grocery stores, and labor groups to announce a growing wave of support for legislation to ban plastic bags in California.
“These so-called ‘free bags’ are an environmental and economic nightmare,” said CAW Executive Director Mark Murray. “Californians use and discard more than 2 million plastic bags every minute of every day and many of those end up as pollution in our parks, streams and ocean.”
Industry and Environmentalists agree that roughly 19 billion plastic bags are distributed in California annually.
In 2006, CAW joined with retailers and the plastics industry in enacting AB 2994 (Levine), legislation aimed at increasing the recycling of plastic bags. However, despite that effort, less than 5% are currently recycled.
Even when bags are initially properly disposed, they often blow out of trash cans, garbage trucks, and landfills and become litter.
Most California retailers currently subsidize the cost of plastic and paper bags. This cost is estimated at more than $400 million annually, and is undoubtedly passed on to consumers in the form of higher grocery costs.
In January, Washington, DC enacted a 5¢ ‘fee’ on grocery bags. That policy has been credited with reducing single-use bags by 65%.
60–80% of marine debris pollution overall, and 90% of the floating marine debris, is plastic litter.
More then 1 million seabirds, 100,000 marine mammals, and countless fish die annually through ingestion of or entanglement in marine debris which includes plastic bags.
AB 1998 is supported by Retailers, Environmental Groups, Local Governments, Labor, and the nation’s largest paper bag manufacturer (Duro Bags).
We covered the initial story back in October when SB 402 was vetoed by Governor Schwarzenegger. Here’s hoping for a revival!
The Bottle Bill Fix, AB 7, just passed the Assembly and now heads to the Governor’s Desk. AB 7 will immediately restore roughly $15 million per month in core recycling funding under California’s successful Bottle Bill. Funding was cut last July forcing the closure of hundreds of centers and the loss of several hundred ‘green jobs’. If signed into law by Governor Schwarzenegger, AB 7 will immediately restore funding and prevent millions in further cuts to recyclers, local governments, conservation corps and other core components of California’s successful Bottle Bill.
California’s successful Beverage Container Recycling Program is under threat due to significant cuts to core recycling programs, such as payments for supermarket-based recycling, payments for curbside recycling and payments to conservation corps recycling. Cuts are due in large part to outstanding loan repayments to General Fund. Without AB 7, California recyclers and local governments will continue to face millions in cuts, including:
$15 million for curbside recycling
$8.25 million for conservation corps recycling
$20 million for recycling grants
$10.5 million to local governments
$10 million for quality incentive payments for glass
$10 million for market development for plastic containers
$44 million in handling fees for supermarket recycling centers
California’s successful Beverage Container Recycling Program is under threat by significant cuts to core recycling programs, such as payments for supermarket-based recycling, payments for curbside recycling and payments to conservation corps recycling. Due to the imbalance, the Department of Conservation was forced to: cut $131 million in funding for local governments, local conservation corps, curbside recycling, recycling market development and other performance-based incentives for recycling; and Increase beverage industry ‘processing fee’ costs by roughly $75 million. Additionally, some 600 California grocery stores are currently unserved by recycling centers, and without relief, they will be obligated to take containers inside their stores.
SB 402 will bring the Beverage Container Recycling Fund back into balance while strengthening recycling. Specifically, SB 402 will:
Expand the scope of beverage containers covered by the program to include all container types for existing beverages, regardless of size or material type.
Accelerate the timeframe for beverage distributors to make CRV payments from 90 to 60 days in order to better align with CRV ‘pay-out’ timeframe (20 days).
Move the existing 10 cent CRV threshold from containers 24 ounces and larger to containers 20 ounces and larger.
Reduce, suspend and eliminate non-core program expenditures by $36 million.
Maintain essential funding for ‘core program’ expenditures.