The Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act has been reintroduced! For the first time ever, our movement has a chance to address various aspects of the plastic pollution crisis at a NATIONAL level. If passed by Congress and signed into law, the Act will:
- Ban certain single-use plastic products that are not recyclable.
- Shift the responsibility for waste management and recycling to the manufacturers of packaging, containers, and food-service products by requiring these producers to design and finance the programs.
- Prohibit plastic waste from being shipped to developing countries.
- Require a compressive analysis of the scale of fishing gear losses by domestic and foreign fisheries, including an evaluation of the ecological, human health, and maritime safety impacts of derelict fishing gear, and recommendations on management measures.
- Expand the definition of toxic chemicals and prohibiting such toxic chemicals from being included in products covered by the legislation.
- Launch a nationwide beverage container refund program to bolster recycling rates.
- Ban single-use plastic carryout bags and placing a fee on the distribution of the remaining carryout bags, which is successful at the state level.
- Establish minimum recycled content requirements for beverage containers, packaging, and food-service products.
- Channel huge investments in U.S. domestic recycling and composting infrastructure.
- Protect state and local governments that enact more stringent standards.
- Put a moratorium on new and expanding plastic production facilities and infrastructure projects until the EPA updates and/or creates vital environmental and health regulations to protect low-resourced and marginalized communities.
- Require EPA with the Academies of Science to conduct a comprehensive study on the environment and cumulative public health impacts of incinerators and so-called “chemical recycling” facilities.
- Require language access for limited English proficient communities impacted by plastic pollution can receive the information they need in the language they better understand.
What makes this legislation extra exciting for Algalita is the fact that Congressman Lowenthal, who is leading the charge behind the bill, represents our very own District 47. For over two decades he has been engaged in Algalita’s work and has even credited us for fueling his inspiration to prioritize this issue. A big thanks to Senator Jeff Merkley who is the lead sponsor from the Senate!
The work to turn this bill into law is far from over. To see the BFFPPA through its passage, we need several members of Congress to co-sponsor the bill, and we need YOUR help in getting their support.
CLICK HERE to learn how to contact your representative!