RE: NRC's stance on bottle bills
Recent articles and letters-to-the-editor in Recycling Today and Waste News discussed whether the National Recycling Coalition is able to take a stand on bottle bills in general and the national bottle bill (Sen. Jim Jeffords' National Beverage Producer Responsibility Act of 2002) in particular. The following notice from NRC's "Recycling Policy Reporter," Volume 3, Issue 8, clarifies the question.
NRC Action Alerts & Advocacy: NRC Board of Directors to Consider Product Stewardship, Bottle Bill Positions:
"During its next meeting on December 7-8, 2002 in Washington, D.C., the NRC board of directors will consider positions on two policy issues: product stewardship and a national bottle bill. The board will consider adoption of the product stewardship principles that NRC's Policy Work Group and staff have been working on over the last year. If you have not done so already, NRC members can submit comments on the draft principles to NRC's Michael Alexander through the end of this week. The board will also consider whether to take a position on national bottle bill legislation introduced by Senator Jeffords. Historically, the NRC board has maintained a neutral position on national bottle bills. As with any issue before the board, NRC members may contact individual board members with their questions and comments."
We have been told that the NRC board may or may not vote to support/oppose or stay neutral on the national bottle bill at the December meeting but that they will at least discuss the issue.
This would seem like a good opportunity to contact NRC board members and share your comments about the bill. A list of the board members is printed below and it can also be found at: http://www.nrc-recycle.org/aboutnrc/boardlist.htm
2002-2003 NRC Board of Directors
Lisa Skumatz, PhD.
Honorary Board Members
2002-2003 NRC Council Leaders
College and University Recycling Council
Minority Recycling Council
William (Bud) Colden
Nonprofit Recyclers Council
Recycling Organizations Council
Rural Recycling Council
This council is currently inactive; members interested in taking a leadership role in reinvigorating the council can contact NRC board member Chris Cloutier at CCLoutier@Drintl.com.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com]On Behalf Of Bill Sheehan
Sent: Wednesday, October 30, 2002 8:36 AM
To: BB CRI List
Subject: [BBAN]: FYI -- NRC Declines to Take Bottle Bill Stance
From Recycling Today
October 29, 2002
NRC Declines to Take Bottle Bill Stance
The National Recycling Coalition, Washington, will apparently not come out in favor of a proposed national bottle bill that would most likely boost the recycling rate of beverage containers.
Citing its diverse membership base, current NRC president Meg Morris recently told attendees at a state recycling association meeting that the organization will not come out in favor of the bill that has been proposed by U.S. Senator James Jeffords (I-Vt.).
Speaking to attendees of the New York State Association for Reduction, Reuse & Recycling Inc. (NYSAR3) at a meeting last week in Binghamton, N.Y., Morris noted that the NRC has been asked to take a stand by some of its members. “But we’re a coalition; we come from a zillion different backgrounds, [and] taking a stand where the membership might have a 50/50 split just doesn’t make much sense.”
The NRC’s national policy director, Michael Alexander, also spoke at the NYSAR3 event, and echoed Morris’ statements. “The nature and diversity of our coalition has not allowed us to take a stance on the issue,” Alexander said of the NRC’s approach to a national bottle bill. “We can step in and provide a forum [on the issue],” he added.
Expanding deposit and return laws to boost recycling rates has seen its first resurgence of interest in nearly two decades with the proposed Jeffords bill and the introduction of a deposit and return system in Hawaii.
In New York State, NYSAR3 has endorsed an expansion of that state’s bottle bill to include bottled water, fruit drinks and other beverages that have greatly increased in sales in the two decades since the state’s current system was put in place.
California has also recently expanded its beverage container deposit and redemption system to include bottled water and other beverages.
Within the NRC, while many recycling advocates would like to see a national bottle return system to boost recycling rates, many solid waste and recycling companies have invested in plants and equipment to support the current curbside systems as they exist in many non-deposit states.
Tuesday, October 29, 2002