SB 54 and AB 1080 (Allen and Gonzalez) The California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act
Overview: SB 54 and AB 1080 will ensure California is on the forefront of reducing pollution from plastic packaging and products. The bills would set goals to reduce waste from single-use packaging and products and ensure the remaining items are effectively recycled and establish a comprehensive framework to address the pollution and waste crisis.
With a planned 40-percent increase in plastic production over the next decade, plastic production will account for 20 percent of global fossil fuel consumption unless we make major policy changes to counter.
Less than 9 percent of plastic is recycled, and that percentage is dropping since the implementation of China’s National Sword and policies in other countries, which severely restricted the amount of foreign waste these countries accept.
While the state and local communities in California have tried to reduce the burden from single-use packaging since the 1980s, taxpayers and local governments still spend over $420 million annually in ongoing efforts to clean up and prevent litter in streets, storm drains, parks and waterways.
Packaging products are typically designed to be used just once and then discarded and they account for 42 percent of all non-fiber plastic produced.
Bill Summary: Eliminating non-reusable, non-recyclable an non-compostable products and reducing packaging is by far the most effective, and least expensive way to protect the health of people, wildlife, and the environment. Many reliable and reusable alternatives already exist and the positive results of their use have been proven. In response, SB 54 and AB 1080 would:
Require all single-use plastic packaging and products sold or distributed in California be reduced or recycled by 75 percent by 2030.
Further, require all single-use packaging and products must be recyclable or compostable on and after 2030.
Instruct CalRecycle to develop incentives and policies to encourage in-state manufacturing using recycled material generated in California.
Position & Status: CAW is supporting the bill.
Introduced December 11, 2018.
Passed Senate Environmental Quality March 20, 2019 (SB54).
Passed Assembly Natural Resources Committee on March 26, 2019 (AB1080).
Passed Senate and Assembly Appropriations Committees on May 16, 2019.
CAW Staff Contact: Mark Murray, Nick Lapis (916) 443-5422