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AB-2321 Plastic packaging containers: compostable.(2011-2012)

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CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2011–2012 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 2321


Introduced  by  Assembly Member Smyth, Gordon

February 24, 2012


An act to amend Sections 42301 and 42340 of the Public Resources Code, relating to recycling.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2321, as introduced, Smyth. Plastic packaging containers: compostable.
Existing law requires rigid plastic packaging containers, as defined, that are sold or offered for sale in this state to meet specified criteria, including, but not limited to, that the container be made from 25% postconsumer material, and provides for the enforcement of these requirements by the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery. Certain classes of rigid plastic packaging containers are exempt from those requirements. Existing law, as of January 1, 2013, prohibits the sale of a plastic product, as defined, labeled as “compostable,” “home compostable,” or “marine degradable” unless it meets certain ASTM standard specifications, or other certain requirements.
This bill would define the term “compostable rigid plastic packaging container” as a rigid plastic packaging container that is labeled with the term “compostable” and is in compliance with those labeling requirements. The bill would additionally exempt compostable rigid plastic packaging from those material requirements.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 42301 of the Public Resources Code is amended to read:

42301.
 For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions apply:
(a) “Compostable rigid plastic packaging container” means a rigid plastic packaging container that is labeled with the term “compostable” and is in compliance with Chapter 5.7 (commencing with Section 42355).

(a)

(b) “Container manufacturer” means a company or a successor company that sells any rigid plastic packaging container subject to this chapter to a manufacturer that sells or offers for sale in this state any a product packaged in that container.

(b)

(c) “Curbside collection program” means a recycling program that collects materials set out by households for collection at the curb at intervals not less than every two weeks. “Curbside collection program” does not include redemption centers, buyback locations, drop-off programs, material recovery facilities, or plastic recovery facilities.

(c)

(d) “Refillable package” means a rigid plastic packaging container that the board department determines is routinely returned to and refilled by the product manufacturer at least five times with the original product contained by the package.

(d)

(e) “Reusable package” means a rigid plastic packaging container that the board department determines is routinely reused by consumers at least five times to store the original product contained by the package.

(e)

(f) “Manufacturer” means the producer or generator of a product that is sold or offered for sale in the state and that is stored inside of a rigid plastic packaging container.

(f)

(g) “Rigid plastic packaging container” means any a plastic package having a relatively inflexible finite shape or form, with a minimum capacity of eight fluid ounces or its equivalent volume and a maximum capacity of five fluid gallons or its equivalent volume, that is capable of maintaining its shape while holding other products, including, but not limited to, bottles, cartons, and other receptacles, for sale or distribution in the state.

(g)

(h) “Postconsumer material” means a material that would otherwise be destined for solid waste disposal, having completed its intended end use and product lifecycle. Postconsumer material does not include materials and byproducts generated from, and commonly reused within, an original manufacturing and fabrication process.

(h)

(i) “Recycled” means a product or material that has been reused in the production of another product and has been diverted from disposal in a landfill.

(i)

(j) “Recycling rate” means the proportion, as measured by weight, volume, or number, of a rigid plastic packaging container sold or offered for sale in the state that is being recycled in a given calendar year, that is one of the following:
(1) A particular type of rigid plastic packaging container, such as a milk jug, soft drink container, or detergent bottle.
(2) A product-associated rigid plastic packaging container.
(3) A single resin type, as specified in Section 18015, of rigid plastic packaging container, notwithstanding the exemption of that container from this chapter pursuant to subdivision (b), (c), or (d), or (e) of Section 42340.

(j)(1)“Source reduced container” means either of the following:

(A)A rigid plastic packaging container for which the manufacturer seeks compliance as of January 1, 1995, whose package weight per unit or use of product has been reduced by 10 percent when compared with the packaging used for that product by the manufacturer from January 1, 1990, to December 31, 1994.

(B)A

(k) “Source reduced container” means a rigid plastic container for which the manufacturer seeks compliance after January 1, 1995, whose package weight per unit or use of product has been reduced by 10 percent when compared with one of the following:

(i)

(A) The packaging used for the product by the manufacturer on January 1, 1995.

(ii)

(B) The packaging used for that product by the manufacturer over the course of the first full year of commerce in this state.

(iii)

(C) The packaging used in commerce that same year for similar products whose containers have not been considered source reduced.
(2) A rigid plastic packaging container is not a source reduced container for the purposes of this chapter if the packaging reduction was achieved by any of the following:
(A) Substituting a different material type for a material that previously constituted the principal material of the container.
(B) Increasing a container’s weight per unit or use of product after January 1, 1991.
(C) Packaging changes that adversely affect the potential for the rigid plastic packaging container to be recycled or to be made of postconsumer material.

(k)

(l) “Product-associated rigid plastic packaging container” means a brand-specific, rigid plastic packaging line that may have one or more sizes, shapes, or designs and that is used in conjunction with a particular generic product line.

(l)

(m)  “PETE” means polyethylene terephthalate as specified in subdivision (a) of Section 18015.

(m)

(n) “HDPE” means high-density polyethylene.

SEC. 2.

 Section 42340 of the Public Resources Code is amended to read:

42340.
 The following rigid plastic packaging containers are exempt from this chapter:
(a) Rigid plastic packaging containers produced in or out of the state which that are destined for shipment to other destinations outside the state and which that remain with the products upon that shipment.
(b) Rigid plastic packaging containers which that contain drugs, medical devices, cosmetics, food, medical food, or infant formula as defined by the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (21 U.S.C. Sec. 301 et seq.).
(c) Rigid plastic packaging containers which that contain toxic or hazardous products regulated by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (7 U.S.C. Sec. 136 et seq.).
(d) Rigid plastic packaging containers which that are manufactured for use in the shipment of hazardous materials and are prohibited from being manufactured with used material by federal packaging material specifications set forth in Sections 178.509 and 178.522 of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, or are subject to testing standards set forth in Sections 178.600 to 178.609, inclusive, of Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations, or to which recommendations of the United Nations on the transport of dangerous goods are applicable.
(e) Compostable rigid plastic packaging containers.