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Bills represent a critical step to building the U.S. infrastructure for increased access to recycling in all communities and to help achieve assertive recyclability, re-use, and recycled content goals.

AMERIPEN members took to the halls of the Congress on September 21, 2022, to encourage legislators to pass two critical pieces of recycling and environmental legislation: The Recycling Infrastructure and Accessibility Act (HR 8183) and the Recycling and Composting Accountability Act (HR 8059).

AMERIPEN members have met with a bipartisan slate of lawmakers to support passage of these measures before this Congressional session ends. This will move the ball forward, providing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the resources that will help inform recycling policy with improved collection and access to reporting and data across current and emerging recycling materials and technologies.

AMERIPEN supports HR 8183, which would provide grants for projects to make recycling programs more accessible to rural and disadvantaged communities. Packaging can be a lifeline to underserved communities for food and other critical products and this bill will help those communities put in place the infrastructure, education, accessibility, and markets for recovering and recycling the packaging materials of today and the future. Our environmental concerns and commitment are based in the community – all communities – and AMERIPEN supports policy changes that will equalize and improve recycling and sustainability opportunities across the board.

AMERIPEN also supports HR 8059 that, among other things, would require the EPA to collect, maintain and publish data on recycling and composting rates across the country. This will provide an accurate reflection of recycling and composting performance nationally and at the state level – information that will be critical to improving existing recycling and composting programs and evaluating future recycling policies. Solutions require data, partnerships and communication to build a packaging design > delivery > collection > recycling > reuse system based on what we know works – and what does not.

HR 8183 and HR 8059 will enable AMERIPEN and others to continue building partnerships with policymakers, communities and other stakeholders to further improve and innovate the current packaging recovery infrastructure in the U.S. – including for systems that can recover compostable packaging.

In July 2022, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed two companion bills, the Recycling and Composting Accountability Act (S 3742) and the Recycling Infrastructure and Accessibility Act (S 3743). With passage of the House bills in upcoming legislative work days, the legislation can then be sent to President Biden for signature into law.

Stephen R. Kay // // 301-908-0095
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AMERIPEN – the American Institute for Packaging and the Environment – is a coalition of packaging industry entities dedicated to improving packaging and the environment. We are the only material-neutral packaging policy association in the United States and our membership represents the entire packaging supply chain, including materials suppliers, packaging producers, consumer packaged goods companies and end-of-life materials managers. Our Vision is for packaging to be recognized for all its benefits, including preventing waste and driving a circular economy and our Mission is to be the leading voice for the packaging industry, using science to inspire, create and advocate for sustainable solutions for the packaging value chain. The packaging industry is a dynamic part of the U.S. economy, accounting for about $537.91 billion in total economic output and supporting nearly 1.7 million American jobs.

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