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[greenyes] Can recycling rate gets boost from container deposit increase in California


May 24, 2005 Jenny Gitlitz
(research director): (413) 684-4746; (413) 822-0115

Pat Franklin (executive director): (703) 276-9800; (703) 304-3546

Can recycling rate gets boost from container deposit increase in California

Arlington, VA--New calculations suggest that that the reported increase in
UBC ?collection? from 2003 to 2004 was due in part to the increase in the
redemption value of beverage cans in California. The higher value resulted
in 680 million more cans collected and recycled in California last year than
in 2003. According to the Container Recycling Institute, the increase in
imported used aluminum beverage cans (UBC?s) also contributed to the
increased recovery rate.

The Aluminum Association, a Washington trade group, reported last Friday
that the U.S. aluminum can recycling rate had risen from 50.0% in 2003 to
51.2% in 2004, and that cans collected for recycling had increased by 1.6
billion during that time. Sales remained roughly constant at 100 billion

CRI research director Jenny Gitlitz said, ?42% of this reported increase
occurred in California as a result of the CRV [California Redemption Value]
going from 2 to 4 cents in January 2004.? This led to an increase of 680
million cans recycled over 2003 levels. ?The higher CRV was clearly a factor
in raising the California UBC recycling rate from 70% in 2003 to 75% in
2004,? she said.

According to CRI, 30% of the reported recycling increase occurred because
490 million more scrap cans were imported into the United States in 2004
than in 2003.

Executive director Pat Franklin explained,? Since these imported scrap cans
have been counted in the recycling rates of Canada, Mexico, and other
foreign countries, it is double-counting to also include them in the U.S.
domestic recycling rate. The USEPA does not includes imported scrap in the
domestic recycling rate.?

Together, these two factors account for 72% of the reported
increase of 1.6 billion cans recovered. ?We applaud the public education and
special programming promoted by the aluminum and beverage industries to
increase recycling,? said Gitlitz, ?but it is clear that the lion?s share
of the slight increase last year was due to factors other than public
education and special programs.?


Patricia Franklin
Executive Director
Container Recycling Institute
1601 North Kent Street, Suite 803
Arlington, VA 22209-2105
TEL: 703.276.9800
FAX: 703.276.9587
EMAIL: pfranklin@no.address

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