Recycling Laws in Washington

Some very progressive stuff is happening down in Olympia this month when it comes to recycling. Several interesting bills are working their way through the state legislature; here’s a preview:

  • The Washington Recycling and Packaging Act or “WRAP Act”) is an exciting piece of legislation. At its heart is the concept of “Extended Producer Responsibility” or “EPR” which we have been writing about for years. It puts the financial burden of recycling on the manufacturers of packaging—where it should be. One of the most exciting things is it proposes a bottle deposit system for Washington—which would be incredible (and unthinkable only a few years ago). The bill does a lot more than just that, you can find out more about HB1131/SB5154 here and here.
  • Another exciting EPR Bill would create a battery recycling program, putting the cost of battery recycling back on the battery manufacturing industry. SB 5144 would create a program for battery recycling much like the State’s current programs for paint, electronics and fluorescent light bulbs.

Other great bills are being proposed that cover issues like Right to Repair, Plastics Reduction, Compostable Product Evaluation, and EPR for appliances.

Thanks to our partners at Zerowaste Washington for their work on all these bills! Visit them here for more info on all these and other bills of interest.