CSAC Opposes Solid Waste Bill (unless amended)
January 29, 2016
AB 45, by Assembly Member Kevin Mullin moved off the Assembly floor this week on a 50-18 vote with several democrats voting no. CSAC has reviewed the amendments that were taken in the Appropriations Committee and unfortunately we still have several issues with the bill.
As amended on January 21st, AB 45 would now require Cal Recycle to develop one or more general household hazardous waste (HHW) model ordinances in consultation with affected industry and stakeholders; defines home generated pharmaceutical waste as HHW; allows for the creation of a nonprofit agency to make grants to local governments to assist with outreach and educations and other costs, and deems five million dollars as sufficient funding for these purposes. The bill would be repealed in 2019 if Cal Recycle determines that there is no nonprofit willing or able to meet parameters in the bill and deemed adequate by Cal Recycle.
The bill also includes intent language that states that the role for manufacturers in the end-of-life management of their products should be based on the ability of manufactures and distributors to communicate with consumers.
CSAC opposes the role outlined for manufactures in this bill. We believe that industries that profit from these hard to manage products should have a significant stake in their proper management and disposal. The bill outlines the role for manufacturers as communicating with consumers and making grants to local governments.
While an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) model may not be appropriate for all products, EPR is an excellent tool to employ for the producers of toxic and expensive-to-manage products, and those that pose additional health and safety risks such as sharps and pharmaceuticals. AB 45 also defines home generated pharmaceutical waste as HHW. We object to home generated pharmaceutical waste being included in the proposed comprehensive hazardous waste program, as neither our state nor federal regulating agencies currently regulate it as such.
This bill will now move to the Senate.