Massachusetts legislators looking to expand bottle recycling law.
Water bottles, juice and sports drinks can be found in many of the same bottles that one can redeem for a deposit fee at the grocery store, but for years these bottles have ended up in trash bins and local landfills. According to the Boston Herald, Massachusetts lawmakers have been trying to expand the state's bottle recycling law to include these containers, but they have encountered fierce criticism from the other side of the aisle that believe that an extra tax is not the right thing for consumers at this juncture.
"The only way it's a tax is if they don't turn in the bottle," state Senator Cynthia Creem (D - Newton) told the news source. "No one expected people to be using bottled water like they have. When you walk through parks and see people throwing water bottles away, my hope is they'll turn them in, get their deposits back and help municipalities increase their recycling."
Opponents of the bill believe that the additional tax will be a burden on Massachusetts residents and businesses, and recycling centers and redemption centers will have to be overhauled to deal with the increased demand. While this may certainly be the case, the amount of water bottles that end up in landfills has reached epidemic proportions, and recycling bins in public places don't seem to be enough to control the amount of waste.
While lawmakers struggle over the logistics of such a bill, public awareness programs and expanded bottle deposits will be pivotal in stemming the tide of waste that is created from used water bottles. By ensuring that all plastic containers don't end up in your trash can, you can do the right thing for the environment and let politicians fight over the logistics.