California’s Bottle Bill is 30 years old, but the 30th anniversary comes with great concern about the recycling rates in the State.
Former Assembly member Burt Margolin (D-Los Angeles), the author of the legislation, Assembly Bill 2020, stated “The legislation set a goal of 80 percent beverage container recycling, which we exceeded in 2008, reaching as high as 85 percent in (2013). But as of mid-2017, recycling rates have slid backwards and now are at 77 percent. There’s an easy fix the Legislature can make in the next few weeks to reverse that trend.”
In the last two years more than 560 recycling centers (about 20%) have closed due to a decrease in recycler reimbursement levels. In terms of container quantity, 2.5 million fewer containers are being recycled per day compared to the last reporting period.
A legislation to address the recycling issue has been put forth by Assembly Budget Committee Chairman Phil Ting and is supported by the Brown Administration. However, it was ignored during recent budget negotiations and is likely to die unless taken up by the Legislature before it adjourns in mid-September.