Foes say plastic bag recycling law won't work
CHICAGO (AP) — Environmentalists are urging Gov. Pat Quinn to veto a bill that would require manufacturers of plastic bags to set up collection and recycling programs, calling it a ploy by industry to do an end run around communities that want to adopt more stringent recycling or reduction programs — or ban the ubiquitous bags altogether.
The proposed law would require plastic bag manufacturers to set up recycling programs with the goal of increasing the recycling rate by 12 percent by 2015 and to eventually make bags from at least 30 percent recycled content. It also would require manufacturers to register with and present plans to the state by next July; retail stores then could use bags only from registered manufacturers.
Max Muller, program director at Environment Illinois, said the recycling goals are paltry but still probably wouldn't be met. What really irks him and some local elected officials, however, is that the bill would prohibit individual communities from enacting their own laws, which Muller said would do far more to reduce litter and environmental harm from bags.
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