New York Creates Statewide Recycling Program for Plastic Bags

ARLINGTON, Va., Dec. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The American Chemistry
Council today applauded New York Governor David Paterson’s decision to sign
legislation (A.11725/S.8643-A) that expands consumers’ access to recycle
plastic bags and product wraps statewide. The new law requires all large
grocers and retailers that offer plastic bags to their customers to provide
collection bins for a wide variety of plastic bags and wraps, thereby
dramatically increasing recycling opportunities across the state.

Numerous municipalities, including New York City, already passed similar
legislation and have established recycling programs. The new state law builds
on these existing programs, enabling all New York residents to participate.

“This is a significant victory for New York’s citizens and the
environment,” said Sharon Kneiss, Vice President of the American Chemistry
Council’s Products Divisions. “The new law creates one consistent standard
statewide that all municipalities can follow, while allowing existing programs
to continue uninterrupted.”

“The two states with the largest populations on each coast now have
statewide plastic bag recycling programs,” Kneiss continued, referring to
recently enacted similar legislation in California. “Clearly, lawmakers
recognize that plastics are a valuable material that should be recycled.”

The latest statistics show that the recycling of plastic bags and wraps
increased 24 percent in 2006 nationwide. Legislation in New York, California
and numerous large cities is expected to increase significantly the amount of
plastic bags and wraps that are diverted from landfills and turned into new
consumer products, such as durable decking, fencing, railings, shopping carts
and new bags.

Grocers, retailers and public officials across the country have partnered
with the Progressive Bag Affiliates to promote in-store recycling programs.
Public-private partnerships and education have been key factors in increasing
consumer participation in plastic bag recycling programs.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies
engaged in the business of chemistry. ACC members apply the science of
chemistry to make innovative products and services that make people’s lives
better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved environmental,
health and safety performance through Responsible Care(R), common sense
advocacy designed to address major public policy issues, and health and
environmental research and product testing. The business of chemistry is a
$664 billion enterprise and a key element of the nation’s economy. It is one
of the nation’s largest exporters, accounting for ten cents out of every
dollar in U.S. exports. Chemistry companies are among the largest investors in
research and development. Safety and security have always been primary
concerns of ACC members, and they have intensified their efforts, working
closely with government agencies to improve security and to defend against any
threat to the nation’s critical infrastructure.



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