Senate passes bills to recycle data collection and rural infrastructure grants
The US Senate has passed two bills aimed at improving rural areas’ access to recycling infrastructure and collecting better data on recycling and composting.
The Recycling Infrastructure and Accessibility Act and the Recycling and Composting Responsibility Act passed in the Senate by unanimous consent on July 28. The bills, which have bipartisan support and have received wide attention from recycling and waste groups, are now moving to the House of Representatives. Both bills also have related legislation in the House.
The Recycling Infrastructure and Accessibility Act, sponsored by Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, RW.Va., aims to create an infrastructure grant program for projects that make recycling services more accessible to rural and disadvantaged communities that have no no reliable access or nearby MRF.
The Recycling and Composting Accountability Act, sponsored by Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., would direct the US EPA to more formally collect many types of recycling and composting data.
The National Association of Waste and Recycling urged the House to pass both bills, with CEO Darrell Smith saying in a statement that the measures “will advance America’s national recycling infrastructure and capabilities.”
“More accurate data will tell us exactly where the gaps in the recycling system are, and improved infrastructure will help to more efficiently collect, sort, and recycle all materials,” said Matt Seaholm, President and CEO. management of PLASTICS, in a statement applaud the passage of the bills.
The Recycling Infrastructure and Accessibility Act, in particular, has prompted widespread support from the recycling industry other groups such as the Solid Waste Association of North, Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, American Forest & Paper Association and American Beverage. Closed Loop Partners, AMP Robotics and several material or packaging manufacturers also support the bill.
The pair of bills were first introduced in March and were quickly passed by Congress. They have also received attention at several congressional hearings, most recently at a House subcommittee on the environment and climate change. audience in June.
During the subcommittee hearing, David Just nowsenior policy analyst for Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality, said collecting detailed data on recycling would help the country avoid spending time and resources on “false solutions” instead. data-driven recycling strategies.
If passed and signed into law, the bills could be the most notable recycling legislation enacted at the federal level since the passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act in 2021, which to bring $350 million for recycling initiatives.