Conflicts in Chemistry: The Case of Plastics

Waste-Recommendations

Waste-Recommendations

 

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Recommendations for the Regulation of Plastic Waste

Waste Group

 

Prepared in Advance of the Environmental Protection Agency Hearing

 

Main Concerns of the Waste Group:

  • Recycling does not solve the problem of plastic waste.

  • Reduction of plastic production and use is the only way to reduce the amount of plastic trash in landfills and the environment.

  • Industry will not effectively regulate itself. The government must force the reduction of plastic use and production, especially of one-use, disposable plastics.

Recommendations Based on Waste Group Concerns:

  • The production and sale of one-use, disposable plastics must be eliminated.

  • Producers must be required to recover and recycle a significant percentage of extended-use plastics at the end of their lives to prevent them from entering landfills.

  • Producers must address the existing environmental effects of plastic materials by financing cleanup efforts and scientific research.

  • Punishments for producers who fail to comply should be strict and should include fines, the closing of plants, and limitations on production.

  • Producers must finance the development of alternative materials to replace one-use, disposable plastic packaging and the production of plastic-free packaging. These alternatives must be environmentally superior to the materials they replace.

  • The production of permitted plastic materials must address environmental concerns. Producers must prioritize reduction followed by reuse and recycling.

  • Producers should develop and finance education programs designed to teach the public about the dangers of plastic waste and to inform people of new policies regarding the collection of plastic trash by producers.

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