Legislators make the point that there are products that exist today that didn’t when Connecticut’s bottle bill was enacted 31 years ago. They’re right.
Putting an incentive on a container will make it more likely to get recycled, but the current bottle bill doesn’t recognize the way Connecticut recycles in the 21st century.
Nestlé Waters North America has set a goal of 60% recycling for “PET” plastic beverage containers in 10 years. Today, 100% of our bottles are recyclable, and water bottles are now the most recycled container in curbside programs in the U.S.
If Connecticut’s bottle bill is going to be expanded, it needs to be modernized in a way that supports curbside recycling and provides flexible return options that are convenient for consumers and not a burden on retailers. It would be a lost opportunity if the legislature simply expands the state’s existing bottle deposit law without considering how modernizing it can actually improve our environment.
We stand ready to work with the Governor and legislative leadership to find a way forward and modernize the aging mold of the bottle bill, so that it boosts bottled water recycling, controls costs, and provides a funding stream for curbside recycling—which is the key to recycling other household items.