“After DES blatantly ignored the law requiring an updated waste plan, any progress is a step in the right direction,” said CLF New Hampshire attorney Heidi Trimarco. “But this draft plan is inadequate and uninspiring. Instead of demonstrating leadership and providing the guidance New Hampshire needs, DES has provided just a laundry list of recommendations, without any real steps to actually achieve them.”
“For decades, the beverage industry has done everything in its power to keep our failed recycling systems in place and prevent new solutions,” said Kirstie Pecci, Director of CLF’s Zero Waste Project. “Most bottles and cans in the U.S. still end up buried in landfills, burned in incinerators, or littering our communities. We must hold Big Beverage accountable for the mess it’s made and invest in real solutions for bottle and can recycling.”
Over the past few years, recycling prices across the U.S. have soared, with some cities and towns now spending millions of dollars on their programs. To understand the financial burden our communities are facing, I spent the better part of last year collecting recycling data from Massachusetts cities and towns. Here’s what I learned.
“Updating Vermont’s bottle bill is a win-win for our communities and our environment,” said Jen Duggan, Vice President & Director of CLF Vermont. “These changes to the bottle bill will result in less climate pollution and waste in our landfills, more green jobs, and millions of dollars for the state’s clean water fund. Passing this legislation into law is just plain common sense.”
“Public health must always be the primary concern,” said Kirstie Pecci, Director of the Zero Waste Project at CLF. “However, the scientific community has made it clear that the risk of transmitting the virus by touching a bag or bottle is almost nonexistent. Allowing reusable bags and resuming bottle deposits will keep tons of plastic out of landfills or incinerators and stop it from further polluting our land and air.”
Under cover of the pandemic, the waste industry is trying to demolish critical environmental protections. In April, the waste industry and Vermont’s Department of Environmental Conservation asked the legislature to delay Vermont’s food scrap ban and trash recyclables, all under the guise of protecting the health of workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. But they appear to be part of a push from waste industry groups to use the crisis to advance their own agenda in several New England states.
“Fossil fuel companies have created the plastic crisis at our expense,” said Brad Campbell, President of Conservation Law Foundation. “Beyond littering our streets and waters, plastic production harms human health, destroys our climate and hobbles the budgets of cities and towns. This groundbreaking federal legislation will hold these large corporations accountable in cleaning up the damage they’ve done.”
In September 2018, leaders from across the country – including CLF’s President, Bradley Campbell – and the globe gathered in San Francisco, California at the Global Climate Action Summit to exchange ideas about how we can address the most pressing issue of our time: climate change. The Summit also challenged cities and towns around the world to step… Continue reading Five Ways Cities and Towns Can Slash Trash and Fight Climate Change
“New England’s waste system is broken,” says Kirstie Pecci, Director of CLF’s Zero Waste Project. “While we wait for much-needed reform, there are steps that each of us can take to make a big difference. For the health of our communities and our planet, achieving zero waste must be everyone’s goal.”
Plastics are everywhere, and they aren’t all recyclable. Until there’s a new system that creates a structure for using less plastic from the beginning, here’s a handy guide to what can and can’t go in the bin.