Maryland pushing for bottle bill

Maryland pushing for bottle bill

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

In Maryland, a lawmaker holding a key legislative position plans to introduce a bill that would establish a container deposit system in the state.

Hoping to raise Maryland's recycling rate, Delegate Maggie McIntosh, a Baltimore Democrat, along with other legislators will push for a proposal they've dubbed "Recycle For Real," reports The Washington Post.

According to a website set up to support the measure, only 22 percent of the 4 billion beverage containers sold in Maryland each year are recycled with the rest ending up as litter or in landfill. The legislation will be sponsored by McIntosh, who co-chairs the Maryland House Environmental Matters Committee, and will mirror other bottle bills by requiring a nickel deposit on covered beverage containers that can be cashed in at redemption centers.

According to the Post, previous attempts to get a bottle bill in Maryland put most of the burden of operating the program on retailers, and the most recent incarnation shifts more of the responsibilities to wholesalers. It also gives distributors the economic incentives to make money off of the program.

The proposed program will distribute unredeemed deposits to counties and the City of Baltimore, as well as state environmental programs. Backers of the legislation anticipate it will generate $200 million annually.

Although the legislation has the support of the Aluminum Association, the Glass Packaging Institute and the Container Recycling Institute, it is opposed by the Maryland-Delaware-D.C. Beverage Association.

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