Thursday night the Massachusetts Legislature made a decisive move. They added the expansion of the bottle bill to the Jobs Bill, linking recycling incentives to economic success in the state. This has been an ongoing debate in Massachusetts for over a decade and now it may become a new reality. The current bottle bill does not cover juice, ice tea or water bottles and the expansion seeks to make those beverages part of the 5 cent redemption program. Opposition to plan comes largely from beverage companies who feel curbside service is enough to recycle. So, in Massachusetts, if you’re against the expanded bottle bill, you are hanging out with big business.
The link below leads to an article from today’s Patriot Ledger that details this battle for the bottle bill. The video link above lets you see the bottle bill advocates in action, making their cause to the people in June 2012 with hopes of what happened yesterday in the legislature.
Only 11 states in the US have bottle bill legislation currently in place. California is poised to be the model of sustainability for the entire country, especially with such strong recycling rates as those in our city of San Francisco. Hopefully we can lead the charge to continue incentives that encourage more people to reduce, reuse and RECYCLE. The more options, incentives and government support we have to make zero waste a national reality, the better off our country will be. And, to think we can do that from the ground up, five cents at a time, with the help of each individual, big or small, rich or poor, is pretty inspiring. Help keep the bottle bill in action by supporting unique initiatives like those at Kezar Gardens Ecology Center and know you are making a difference to environmental movements across this great country.