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California Passes Single-use Packaging and Product Bills

June 13th, 2019
On 29 May 2019 the SB-54 was passed in state senate and its companion bill, AB-1080 was passed in the state assembly on 20 May 2019. The Bills enact the California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act. 

What does this mean for you? 

The Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) is required to adopt regulations by 1 January 2023, that would require manufacturers and retailers of single-use packaging or priority single-use plastic products to source reduce those products and ensure that those products are recyclable or compostable. The following requirements would be placed on manufacturers if the Bills pass the final vote: 
  • Single-use products and packaging are to be source reduced to reusable packaging and products to the greatest extent feasible 
  • All single-use products and packaging should be recyclable or compostable by 2030 
  • Manufacturers are to meet a waste reduction rate of no less than 20% on and after 1 January 2024; no less than 40% on and after 1 January 2028; and no less than 75% on and after 1 January 2030. The targets are to be met through source reduction, recycling, or composting 

What is a priority single-use plastic product? 

A priority single-use plastic product are the 10 single-use plastic products that are the most littered in California. This will be determined by the department based on litter surveys conducted in California between 2017 and 2020. 

The only products expressly exempt from the scope of the bills are medical devices and products that are required to be sterile; prescription medicine; and the packaging used for such products. 

An increase in single use plastic bans 

In April 2019, New York imposed a statewide ban on single-use plastic bags, the Law is due to come into effect in March 2020. Hawaii also has a single use plastic bag ban and has since proposed a Bill that would prohibit restaurants and government agencies from using plastic items such as bottles, straws, utensils and foam containers, by 2022. Further afield, the European Parliament approved a Single-Use Plastics Directive on 27 March 2019. 

How can we help?

We can monitor the regulatory changes in the USA for you. EC4P offers a quarterly update service specific to your company, taking into account your company‚Äôs sales arrangements and products to notify you if you need to put in place or modify compliance arrangements. Please contact us if you would like more information on this service and how else we can manage your e-waste, batteries and packaging compliance obligations.