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Minnesota passes producer responsibility law

  • : Petrochemicals
  • 24/05/22

Minnesota became the fifth state to pass an extended producer responsibility (EPR) law for packaging in the US after Governor Tim Walz (D) signed the bill into law on Tuesday.

The law requires producers of consumer goods to take responsibility for end-of-life packaging, and provide funding for recycling programs and expansions.

However, it does not assign full responsibility to producers, instead requiring them to pay half of recycling costs by January 2029, which will then scale up to 90pc by 2031.

Minnesota joins Oregon, Maine, California, and Colorado in adopting an EPR law. The Minnesota law establishes a single producer responsibility organization to administer producer fees and collect recycling data.

Some industry associations, including the American Institute for Packaging and the Environment and the Consumer Brands Association (CBA), supported the bill.

"The EPR framework established in this bill, which finances recycling through shared responsibility, will strengthen Minnesota's recycling infrastructure and increase recycling access for consumers," CBA said.

However, The American Forest & Paper Association (AFPA) urged Governor Walz to veto the bill, saying it would "ultimately punish responsible producers" and inhibit the paper industry's investments.

AFPA had criticized Colorado's EPR bill before it became law.

The state's EPR bill was passed as part of a larger supplemental budget law for Minnesota natural resources, and includes provisions for other environmental concerns such as water quality.

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