Manufacturers should not be allowed to reap profits while their toxic products and packaging harm our health and environment. Producer responsibility laws have the potential to drastically cut our waste generation and disposal, as well as their harms. And all while holding producers accountable.
During my recent stint on parental leave, I tried to disconnect from my Zero Waste work. But I quickly realized that there’s no off-switch for corporate greenwashing. So, I’d like to set the record straight. What does circular economy really mean? And why will single-use plastics and waste-burning technologies never have a place in it? Here are the answers.
It’s the most wonderful (and wasteful) time of the year! As retailers bombard your inbox this holiday season, we challenge you to think outside the box – literally. To help you out, we’ve crafted a list of our top Zero Waste gifts to give this year.
Plastic is everywhere – even in the places you’d least expect, like chewing gum, tea bags, wet wipes, receipts, and microwaveable popcorn bags. Yet, manufacturers continue to make more and more plastic each year – even though how plastic is made fuels a toxic cycle of production, consumption, and disposal.
Today’s throw-away culture exists because plastic producers and manufacturers choose to make single-use products and packaging that cannot be recycled. But we can change that by passing legislation that will hold producers accountable for the waste they create.
“Maine’s current recycling system is broken,” said Peter Blair, Zero Waste Attorney at CLF Maine. “Cities and towns are paying exorbitant disposal rates for polluting products that are deliberately manufactured to be unrecyclable. It’s time plastic producers pay for polluting our air, land, and water with their products, and this law will finally hold them accountable.”
Connecticut’s updated bottle bill is both a step forward and a step back. We break down the good, the bad, and the ugly of the new legislation.
The plastics and petrochemical industries want to make it easier to burn plastic with high-heat technology. Why? So that they can continue to produce tons of plastic while pretending to be a part of the solution. But plastic-burners are toxic. That’s why we’re fighting back.
Recycling is confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. By holding Big Corporations responsible for the flood of single-use packaging they create, we can incentivize them to redesign their products and containers to be truly recyclable, or better yet, reusable.
Burning and burying our trash leads to carbon pollution. We need to phase out these old, polluting incinerators and landfills and replace them with zero-waste alternatives. By doing so, we can help lower climate-damaging emissions and protect our communities and the environment.