California is just one of several states across the nation working to expand existing beverage container recycling laws, or in the case of Texas, create a new one. Vermont, Massachusetts and Iowa are all considering expanding their existing bills.
AB 1001 (Gordon) would expand California’s landmark Bottle Bill to include all beverage container types. It would cover aseptic containers like juice boxes, and also large sized plastic juice bottles. In addition, it would reduce program inefficiencies, increasing clarity and enforcement of current rules to support legitimate California recyclers, jobs and recycling.
California’s Bottle Bill has consistently led to high recycling rates for beverage containers, with over 80 percent or 17 million containers recycled annually. High recycling rates mean less litter on our streets and in our waterways. In addition, recycling beverage containers prevents the emission of more than 300,000 tons of GHG annually by preventing mining of virgin resources and reducing the amount of litter that is landfilled. Less litter in the landfill means a reduction in methane gas—which is 25 times more potent than Carbon Dioxide.
Recycling creates more jobs than landfilling by adding value and employing people at every step of the process. Consider the recycling loop: jobs are created in the collection, processing, manufacturing, and selling of recycled products. When garbage is landfilled, the materials are collected and disposed of without any opportunity for continued economic activity.
Covering more beverage containers under the Bottle Bill will only continue to add jobs to California’s economy.