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[greenyes] Environmental, Recycling Leaders Support Senator Jeffords' Bill to Increase Recycling
November 14, 2003                 Contacts: Pat Franklin 703/276-9800
						        Lance King 703/536-7282

Environmental, Recycling Leaders Support Senator Jeffords? Legislation to
Double Bottle and Can Recycling

Nation?s largest glass recycling company backs proposal

WASHINGTON (November 14, 2003) ? Three dozen environmental groups, recycling
organizations and businesses announced support today for legislation
sponsored by Senator James Jeffords (I?VT) aimed at doubling the national
beverage container recycling rate.

 Sen. Jeffords? bill, the ?National Beverage Container Producer
Responsibility Act of 2003,? would hold beverage companies responsible for
developing a system to achieve an 80 percent recycling rate for their
containers.  A 10-cent refundable deposit would apply to an estimated 180
billion aluminum cans, plastic and glass bottles used as packaging for most
kinds of beverages, excluding dairy products.

?I am introducing this bill on the eve of America Recycles Day to create
accessible bottle and can recycling options for all Americans,? Senator
Jeffords said.

?The ten states with bottle bills are recycling more bottles and cans than
the other 40 states combined.  My bill would leverage the market incentives
created by a refundable deposit to encourage beverage container recycling.
One innovation in the legislation is that industry would have the
flexibility to devise the most cost-effective means to meet the goal."

"My bill will double the national beverage container recycling rate, save
energy, reduce pollution, prevent road side litter and create sustainable
jobs," Jeffords said.  Original co-sponsors of the bill include Senators
John F. Kerry (D-MA), Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT) and Joseph I. Lieberman
(D-CT).  All four senators represent states with deposit laws, popularly
known as "bottle bills?.

?Recycling is the most popular way that individuals express support for
environmental protection,? said Dr. Allen Hershkowitz, senior researcher
with the Natural Resources Defense Council.  ?Unfortunately, we are seeing a
decline in recycling of many materials--except in states with financial
incentives like the refundable deposit on beverage containers.?

 Pat Franklin, executive director of the Container Recycling Institute,
said: ?Deposit laws are the most effective public or private recycling
policy adopted in the past 30 years. The ten states that currently require
refundable deposits recycle 490 containers per person per year, compared to
only 190 per person in non-deposit states.?

Fifteen national environmental and recycling organizations, and a major
glass recycling business, publicly endorsed the bill today. Endorsements
came from American Littoral Society, Container Recycling Institute, Center
for a New American Dream, Co-op America, Friends of the Earth, GrassRoots
Recycling Network, Greenpeace USA, International Rivers Network, Mineral
Policy Center, Natural Resources Defense Council, Physicians for Social
Responsibility, Scenic America, Sierra Club, Strategic Materials, US Public
Interest Research Group.

Tex Corley, president of Strategic Materials, said: "Creating a strong
financial incentive for recycling is good for business.  Glass and other
materials collected through deposit systems, unlike those collected through
curbside recycling programs, are of a higher quality, and thus more
marketable.  That's why I support the legislation sponsored by Senator
Jeffords."  Strategic Materials, based in Houston, Texas, is the nation?s
largest company processing glass for use primarily by the glass container
and fiberglass manufacturing industries.

Of the ten states that have implemented deposit laws, Michigan is the only
one with a 10-cent deposit.  That state also has the highest beverage
container recycling rate of any state--95 percent.  The forty states without
deposit laws recycle those containers at an average rate of approximately 30
percent, according to the Container Recycling Institute.

?The greatest environmental benefits flowing from a national deposit system
would be the energy savings from using more recycling materials and
reduction of air and water pollution,? said Jim Mays, the national Sierra
Club?s Waste Committee Chair.

The Container Recycling Institute estimates that the total energy savings
achieved by a national bottle bill would be 53 million barrels of crude oil
equivalent (bcoe) annually, or enough to meet the annual residential energy
needs of more than 3 million American households a year.

?More than 100 million Americans recycle every day at home or work.  America
Recycles Day on November 15 is a positive celebration.  But the nation?s
leading beverage companies, like Coke and Pepsi, keep churning out billions
of single-serving, throwaway containers that don?t get recycled.  These
companies have spent hundreds of millions of dollars fighting deposit
systems, but haven?t come up with realistic alternatives to achieve
comparable results,? Franklin said.

Currently, municipal and state governments absorb the fiscal burden of
recycling or disposing of containers.  The Jeffords bill would transfer this
cost to the producers and consumers of the beverages.  ?By holding producers
and consumers responsible for the 180 billion bottles and cans purchased
each year, we can increase recycling at no cost to taxpayers,? David Wood,
executive director of the GrassRoots Recycling Network said.

States with container deposit laws include:  California, Connecticut,
Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Oregon and
Vermont.  Hawaii adopted a new bottle bill last year that goes into effect
in 2005.

Additional materials available upon request:
1) Copy of support letter and list of more then 3 dozen national and
statewide organizations and businesses supporting Sen. Jeffords National
Beverage Producer Responsibility Act of 2003.
2) Fact Sheet #1: The National Beverage Producer Responsibility Act of 2003
3) Fact Sheet #2: The Impact of the ?National Beverage Producer
Responsibility Act? on Existing Bottle Bill States
OR visit


Patricia Franklin
Executive Director
Container Recycling Institute
1911 N. Fort Myer Drive, Ste. 702
Arlington, VA 22209

TEL:   703.276.9800
FAX:   703.276.9587
EMAIL: pfranklin@no.address

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