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SB-33 Solid waste: reduction and recycling.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 12/03/2018 09:00 PM
SB33:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 33


Introduced by Senator Skinner

December 03, 2018


An act relating to solid waste.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 33, as introduced, Skinner. Solid waste: reduction and recycling.
The California Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989, administered by the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery, generally regulates the disposal, management, and recycling of solid waste.
This bill would state the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would address the collapse of foreign recycling markets by reducing solid waste generation, encouraging transition to compostable or recyclable materials, and fostering domestic recycling markets.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) Since the enactment of the California Integrated Waste Management Act of 1989 (Division 30 (commencing with Section 40000) of the Public Resources Code), local governments and private industries have worked together to create an extensive material collection and recycling infrastructure and have implemented effective programs to achieve a statewide solid waste diversion rate above 50 percent.
(b) Although the state now leads the nation in solid waste reduction and recycling, the state continues to dispose of more than 35 million tons of solid waste each year, which is more than the national average when measured on a per capita basis. Meanwhile, global solid waste generation is increasing faster than any other environmental pollutant. Additional efforts must be undertaken to divert more solid waste from disposal in order to conserve scarce natural resources, and to prevent waste generation.
(c) Historically, China has been the largest recyclable scrap importer in the world. Since 1992, it is estimated China has imported around 45 percent of the cumulative global plastic waste. In 2017, California exported 8.1 million tons of recyclable materials to China.
(d) In 2017 and 2018, China issued its National Sword and Blue Sky policies, which placed heavy restrictions on the contamination levels of recyclable materials that would be accepted by China’s recycling market. In July 2018, China declared its intent to ban all recyclable material imports by 2020.
(e) In response to China’s National Sword and Blue Sky policies, California has seen a 100,000-ton drop in exports of mixed plastics previously exported to China, and a 725,000-ton drop in paper previously exported to China. New foreign markets for this recyclable material are scarce and the material is being stockpiled or sent to landfills in California.
(f) California has a goal of recycling, composting, or reducing 75 percent of the state’s solid waste by 2020. This solid waste diversion goal is threatened by the collapse of foreign recycling markets. California must reduce, recycle, or compost about 24 million tons of material currently going to landfills annually in order to meet its 2020 goal.
(g) Local governments and the state have relied heavily on solid waste diversion and recycling to meet their solid waste reduction goals. Due to the lack of adequate recycling markets, this reliance on diversion and recycling may no longer be viable. Local governments and the state can employ new strategies, including source reduction, to meet their solid waste reduction goals.

SEC. 2.

 It is the intent of the Legislature to enact legislation that would address the collapse of foreign recycling markets by reducing solid waste generation, encouraging transition to compostable or recyclable materials, and fostering domestic recycling markets.