Bill Memo: No Thank You to Plastic Beverage Rings

1-Tree: Beneficial rating

Summary

This legislation amends subdivision 3 of section 27-1011 of the environmental conservation law to ban the sale of beverage containers that are connected to each other by plastic.

Explanation

This legislation bans the sale of beverage containers that are connected to each other by plastic. This ban would help New York t1ake another step to prevent plastic pollution that harms our environment and wildlife.

Single use plastic products have proven to be harmful for decades, by polluting the environment, impacting human health and contaminating our drinking water. Plastic pollution threatens wildlife that consume it or get caught in it, killing thousands of birds and marine creatures each year. Exposure to chemicals that leak out of plastic is linked to cancers, birth defects and other ailments. Plastic can enter our drinking supply either by breaking down over time into microplastics that are found in our drinking water, or through toxic chemicals that leach from landfills and seep into groundwater, eventually contaminating groundwater supplies.

In New York City alone, 36 million pounds of single use plastics are used each year. Despite recycling programs, only 9% of plastic is successfully recycled, leaving harmful plastic pollution in our communities, in our drinking water, and in our oceans. Reducing the impact that plastic waste has on our communities and environment starts with discouraging the sale and consumption of single use plastic products.

While this legislation takes steps towards reducing plastic pollution, this bill would not cover all beverage containers distributed in the State. This bill amends the State’s container deposit law (commonly known as “the bottle bill” law), which covers many beverage containers but does not apply to all beverage products that may use a plastic beverage holder devices, such as ciders and noncarbonated beverages, such as juices. This legislation would be stronger if it applied to all beverage containers sold in the State, not just to those beverages covered under the State’s container deposit law.

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Environmental Advocates NY Bill Rating: Beneficial

Memo #: 3