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SB-54 California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 03/25/2019 02:00 PM
SB54:v96#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  March 25, 2019
Amended  IN  Senate  March 07, 2019
Amended  IN  Senate  February 25, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 54


Introduced by Senators Allen, Skinner, Stern, and Wiener
(Principal coauthor: Assembly Member Gonzalez)

December 11, 2018


An act to add Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 42040) to Part 3 of Division 30 of the Public Resources Code, relating to solid waste.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 54, as amended, Allen. California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act.
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, including, among other solid waste, single-use plastic straws.
The Sustainable Packaging for the State of California Act of 2018 prohibits a food service facility located in a state-owned facility, operating on or acting as a concessionaire on state property, or under contract to provide food service to a state agency from dispensing prepared food using a type of food service packaging unless the type of food service packaging is on a list that the department publishes and maintains on its internet website that contains types of approved food service packaging that are reusable, recyclable, or compostable.
Existing law makes a legislative declaration that it is the policy goal of the state that not less than 75% of solid waste generated be source reduced, recycled, or composted by 2020.
This bill would establish the California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act, which would require the department, in consultation with the State Water Resources Control Board and the Ocean Protection Council, to adopt regulations to source reduce and recycle 75% of single-use packaging and products sold or distributed in California by 2030. The bill would require the department to adopt regulations to accomplish that requirement, including, among others, regulations to require businesses to source reduce, to the maximum extent feasible, single-use packaging and products, to recycle, and require businesses to source reduce, at least 75% of single-use plastic packaging and products by 2030, and to require that all single-use packaging and products distributed or sold in California are recyclable or compostable on and after 2030. The bill would require the department, on or before January 1, 2021, to prepare and approve a scoping plan to set a baseline for and achieve those reduction and recycling requirements.
The bill would require the department to develop criteria to determine which types of single-use packaging or products are reusable, recyclable, or compostable. The bill would require local governments, solid waste facilities, recycling facilities, and composting facilities to provide information requested by the department for purposes of developing that criteria. By imposing additional duties on local governments, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
The bill would require a manufacturer of single-use plastic packaging or products sold or distributed in California to demonstrate a recycling rate of not less than 20% on and after January 1, 2022, and not less than 40% on and after January 1, 2026, as a condition of sale, and would authorize the department to impose a higher recycling rate as a condition of sale, as specified.
The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that, if the Commission on State Mandates determines that the bill contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement for those costs shall be made pursuant to the statutory provisions noted above.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

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


SECTION 1.

 Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 42040) is added to Part 3 of Division 30 of the Public Resources Code, to read:
CHAPTER  3. California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act

42040.
 This chapter shall be known, and may be cited, as the California Circular Economy and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act.

42041.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) Annual global production of plastic has reached 335 million tons and continues to rise. The United States alone discards 30 million tons each year. By 2050, plastic production will account for 20 percent of global fossil fuel consumption.
(b) Since plastic does not biodegrade, but simply breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces, virtually every gram of plastic ever created continues to exist, mostly either in a landfill or as pollution in our environment. As plastic breaks down, it emits potent greenhouse gases.
(c) Based on data from the United States Environmental Protection Agency, Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries trade statistics, and industry news source Resource Recycling, the national recycling rate for plastic is projected to sink from 9.1 percent in 2015 to 4.4 percent in 2018, and could drop to 2.9 percent in 2019. Even in California, less than 15 percent of single-use plastic is recycled, and the cost to recycle plastics exceeds the value of scrap plastic material.
(d) Before 2017, the United States was sending 4,000 shipping containers a day full of American waste to China every year, including two-thirds of California’s recyclable materials. However, China has implemented the National Sword and Blue Sky policies, severely restricting the amount of contaminated and poorly sorted plastics it would accept. This shift in China’s policy has resulted in the loss of markets for low-value plastic packaging that was previously considered recyclable. That material is now being landfilled or burned.
(e) The environmental and public health impacts of plastic pollution are devastating and the environmental externalities and public costs of cleaning up and mitigating plastic pollution are already staggering and continue to grow.
(f) Local governments in California annually spend in excess of $420 million in ongoing efforts to clean up and prevent plastic and other litter from entering our rivers and streams and polluting our beaches and oceans.
(g) Evidence now shows that even our own food and drinking water sources are contaminated with plastic, called microplastics, including tap water, bottled water, table salt, and fish and shellfish from local California fish markets. A growing body of research is finding plastic and associated toxins throughout the food web, including in our blood, feces, and tissues. Exposure to these toxins has been linked to cancers, birth defects, impaired immunity, endocrine disruption, and other ailments.
(h) Without action, projections estimate that by 2050 the mass of plastic pollution in the ocean will exceed the mass of fish. A study by the University of Exeter and Plymouth Marine Laboratory found plastics in the gut of every single sea turtle examined and in 90 percent of seabirds. Additionally, plastic negatively impacts marine ecosystems and wildlife, as demonstrated by countless seabirds, turtles, and marine mammals, including, but not limited to, whales and dolphins, dying from plastic ingestion or entanglement.
(i) It is the policy goal of the state that not less than 75 percent of solid waste generated be source reduced, recycled, or composted by the year 2020. However, as of 2017, the state was only on track to reach 44 percent, falling far short of this important goal.
(j) As the fifth largest economy in the world, California has a responsibility to lead on solutions to the growing plastic pollution crisis.
(k) Further, businesses selling products into California have a responsibility to ensure that their packaging and products are minimizing waste, including ensuring materials used are reusable, recyclable, or compostable. This responsibility includes paying for the cost of the negative externality of recovery for materials they sell in California.

42042.
 Consistent with the policy goal established in Section 41780.01, the department, in consultation with the State Water Resources Control Board and the Ocean Protection Council, shall adopt regulations to source reduce and recycle at least 75 percent of single-use packaging and products sold or distributed in California by 2030. In addition to any other regulations and policies the department deems necessary to accomplish this requirement, the department shall adopt regulations to do all of the following:
(a) Require businesses to source reduce, to the maximum extent feasible, single-use packaging and products. In addition to other mechanisms, source reduction shall include reducing excess packaging and transitioning single-use packaging and products to reusable packaging and products.
(b) Recycle, and require businesses to source reduce, at least 75 percent of single-use plastic packaging and products by 2030.
(c) Require that all single-use packaging and products distributed or sold in California are recyclable or compostable on and after 2030.
(d) Develop incentives and policies to maximize and encourage in-state manufacturing using recycled material generated in California.
(e) Develop economic mechanisms to reduce the distribution of single-use packaging and products.
(f) Discourage, to the extent feasible, the litter, export, or improper disposal of single-use packaging, products, and other materials likely to harm the environment or public health in California or elsewhere in the world.

42043.
 (a) The regulations adopted pursuant to Section 42042 may include, but are not limited to, regulations that do any of the following:
(1) Require notification of the department prior to the export of unprocessed plastic for recycling in a country that is not a member of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
(2) Establish labeling requirements for single-use packaging and products that pose a contamination or cost burden to California’s waste reduction and recycling efforts.
(3) Adopt voluntary guidelines for manufacturers and retailers to reduce packaging waste, including through the creation of effective and convenient take-back opportunities, deposit systems, or similar mechanisms.
(4) Develop alternative compliance mechanisms for manufacturers and retailers, including market mechanisms that reduce the overall material usage across a company’s product line or between multiple manufacturers of similar products.
(5) Include actions identified through the California Ocean Litter Prevention Strategy and the Statewide Microplastics Strategy.
(6) Identify priority single-use packaging and product materials for reduction actions.
(7) Establish criteria for the source reduction requirements specified in Section 42042, including reducing weight, volume, or quantity of single-use packaging or product material.
(8) Establish minimum postconsumer recycled content requirements for single-use packaging and products.
(b) (1) As part of the regulations adopted pursuant to Section 42042, the department shall establish a process for businesses to annually report all of the following information to the department:
(A) The quantity and type of packaging materials sold into California by the business.
(B) The quantity and type of material source reduced by the business annually.
(C) Any other data the department deems necessary to establish a baseline for waste generation and subsequent source reduction by a business.
(2) Any market sensitive data received by the department pursuant to this subdivision shall be held confidentially by the department.
(3) The department may create an online registration form to facilitate submitting reports pursuant to this subdivision.
(c) The regulations adopted pursuant to Section 42042 shall not impose restrictions on the production or sale of medical devices.

42044.
 (a) On or before January 1, 2021, the department shall prepare and approve a scoping plan, as that term is understood by the department, for achieving the requirements in Section 42042. The department shall consult with all relevant state agencies with jurisdiction over sources of waste, and local jurisdictions and regional agencies charged with meeting waste diversion goals.
(b) As part of the plan, the department shall do both of the following:
(1) Determine which products and packaging are considered single use for the purposes of this chapter. In making this determination, the department shall consider both of the following:
(A) Whether the packaging or product was conceived of, designed, or placed on the market to be conventionally disposed of after a single use.
(B) Whether the packaging or product was designed and intended to be durable or washable, allowing for multiple uses over the lifespan of the packaging or product.
(2) Establish an accounting of the total quantity of single-use packaging and products disposed of, generated, and used in the state, and set a baseline amount for the reduction and recycling requirements of Section 42042. To determine the amount of a source reduction requirement, the department shall establish a baseline using the last three years of packaging material sold by businesses into the State of California. For purposes of this chapter, source reduction shall not include replacing a recyclable material with a nonrecyclable material.
(c) The plan shall identify and make recommendations on direct reductions of single-use consumer goods, alternative compliance mechanisms, market-based compliance mechanisms, and potential monetary and nonmonetary incentives the department finds are necessary or desirable to facilitate the achievement of the requirements of Section 42042.
(d) In developing the plan, the department shall consider all relevant information on reduction programs in other states, localities, and nations, including, but not limited to, the European Union, India, Costa Rica, and Canada.
(e) The department shall evaluate the total potential costs and total potential economic and noneconomic benefits of the plan to California’s economy, environment, and public health, using the best available economic models, diversion and reduction estimation techniques, and other scientific methods.
(f) The department shall conduct a series of public workshops throughout the state to give interested parties an opportunity to comment on the plan. The department may convene a stakeholder group to assist the department in developing the plan that consists of, but is not limited to, product and packaging manufacturers, retailers, environmental organizations, and trade associations.
(g) The department shall update its plan at least once every three years.
(h) After the requirements in Section 42042 are achieved, the department shall update the plan to ensure the requirements are maintained, and, if technologically feasible and cost effective, exceeded.

42045.
 (a) In adopting regulations pursuant to Section 42042, the department shall develop criteria to determine which types of single-use packaging or products are reusable, recyclable, or compostable.
(b) For purposes of determining if single-use packaging or products are recyclable, the director shall consider, at a minimum, all of the following criteria:
(1) Whether the single-use packaging or product is eligible to be labeled as “recyclable” in accordance with the uniform standards contained in Article 7 (commencing with Section 17580) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 7 of the Business and Professions Code.
(2) Whether the single-use packaging or product is regularly collected, separated, and cleansed for recycling by recycling service providers.
(3) Whether the single-use packaging or product is regularly sorted and aggregated into defined streams for recycling processes.
(4) Whether the single-use packaging or product is regularly processed and reclaimed or recycled with commercial recycling processes.
(5) Whether the single-use packaging or product material regularly becomes feedstock that is used in the production of new products.
(6) Whether the single-use packaging or product material is recycled in sufficient quantity, and is of sufficient quality, to maintain a market value.
(c) For purposes of determining if single-use packaging or products are compostable, the director shall consider, at a minimum, all of the following criteria:
(1) Whether the single-use packaging or product will, in a safe and timely manner, break down or otherwise become part of usable compost that can be composted in a public or private aerobic compost facility designed for and capable of processing postconsumer food waste and food-soiled paper.
(2) Whether the single-use packaging or product made from plastic is certified to meet the ASTM standard specification identified in either subparagraph (A) or (C) of paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 42356 and adopted in accordance with Section 42356.1, if applicable.
(3) Whether the single-use packaging or product is regularly collected and accepted for processing at public and private compost facilities.
(4) Whether the single-use packaging or product is eligible to be labeled as “compostable” in accordance with the uniform standards contained in Article 7 (commencing with Section 17580) of Chapter 1 of Part 3 of Division 7 of the Business and Professions Code.
(d) (1) In implementing this section, the department may consult with local governments and representatives of the solid waste industry, the recycling industry, the compost industry, and single-use product and packaging manufacturers to determine if a type of single-use packaging or product is recyclable, reusable, or compostable.
(2) Local governments, solid waste facilities, recycling facilities, and composting facilities shall provide information requested by the department pursuant to paragraph (1) to the department.

42046.
 (a) A manufacturer of single-use plastic packaging or products sold or distributed in California shall demonstrate a recycling rate of not less than 20 percent on and after January 1, 2022, and not less than 40 percent on and after January 1, 2026, as a condition of sale of single-use plastic packaging or products.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the department may impose a higher recycling rate as a condition of sale of single-use plastic packaging or products by a manufacturer as needed to achieve the requirements established in Section 42042.
(c) For purposes of this section, “recycling rate” means the percentage, as measured by weight, volume, or number, of single-use plastic packaging or products sold or offered for sale in the state that is recycled in a year-long period, as determined by the department. Recycling rate may be measured by any of the following:
(1) A particular type of single-use packaging or product, such as a thermoformed or molded container, soft drink container, or detergent bottle.
(2) A product-associated item of packaging.
(3) A single resin type, as specified in Section 18015.

SEC. 2.

 If the Commission on State Mandates determines that this act contains costs mandated by the state, reimbursement to local agencies and school districts for those costs shall be made pursuant to Part 7 (commencing with Section 17500) of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Government Code.