Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Our Environment - Interesting & important read – CNN BUSINESS - Coke and Pepsi abandon the plastics lobby, by Danielle Wiener-Bronner, CNN Business, Tue July 30, 2019

When is participating in a plastic lobby part of recycling effort versus protecting the market for producers and distributors of single use plastics? 

This is important as there is a huge difference between ‘can be recycled’ versus the percentage actually recycled. It could be more than fair to say that recycling has been a well-intentioned, but documented as a failure to date, as  a "whopping 91% of plastic isn't recycled." (the National Geographic article source is posted below)

Please read this online article, CNN BUSINESS - Coke and Pepsi abandonthe plastics lobby, by Danielle Wiener-Bronner, CNN Business, Tue July 30, 2019
Coca-Cola and PepsiCo, two major sellers of plastic bottles, have made sweeping sustainability commitments. Now they are stepping away from a plastics lobbying group.
Both soft drink companies are trying to increase the amount of recycled plastic they use in bottles. They want to improve recycling infrastructure and ensure their packages are recyclable.
But the Plastics Industry Association has encouraged states to make plastic bans illegal.

We have seen the impact of such lobbying efforts. Florida municipalities have been at odds with groups such as the Plastics Industry Association, groups that have worked to have our State Legislature preempt and outlaw local municipal rights to pass ordinances on everything from plastic bags as well as plastic straws.

The recent actions of Coca-Cola and PepsiCo should provide pause to everyone concerned with our environment (and this should actually be “everyone”). What are the standards, the established markers or “deliverables” / “measurables” for recycling? Most, but not all, single use plastic bottles are “recyclable”. Miami-Dade County limits plastic recycling to “narrow neck” – specifically:
Plastic containers (bottles only): bottles, milk, water, detergent, soda and shampoo containers (flatten and replace cap) (CLICK HERE).

9 % recycling rate? See National Geographic - PLANET OR PLASTIC? A whopping 91% of plastic isn't recycled - read the article on how "Billions of tons of plastic have been made over the past decades, and much of it is becoming trash and litter, finds the first analysis of the issue."
The CNN article reports that “Coca-Cola (KO) produced 3.3 million tons of plastic in 2017, it disclosed in recent report by the Ellen MacArthur foundation. PepsiCo (PEP) did not disclose how much plastic it sells.”

That is a significant amount of single use plastic that is NOT recycled. Further,
Both companies are trying to figure out ways to reduce their use of virgin plastics and increase recycling. They're also exploring alternatives to plastics, like aluminum, that are easier to recycle.
PepsiCo announced recently that its Aquafina-brand water will be sold in aluminum cans at US fast food and restaurant chains as soon as next year. The company is testing out a broader rollout to retail stores.

BLOG EDITOR'S NOTE: Please review these prior, related Blog Posts, including:

May 22, 2019, FAQ - Accommodations in the Plastic Straw ordinance forADA/Medical necessity - other exemptions. I posted FAQs regarding  Council Member Singer’s ordinance, presenting the facts, responding to rumor and incorrect information, and

May 15, 2019, End the delay, the time is now for Palmetto Bay to debateand take action on Council Member David Singer's proposed ordinance to banplastic straws in Palmetto Bay. The point of this blog post was to advocate for the current mayor and council to cease resistance, to stop bottling up, Council Member David Singer's plastic straw ban and let the debate come to the council floor where council members can finally let the public know why they have not seen fit to hear this item. There are no reasons to continue to avoid the issue of banning plastic straws in Palmetto Bay - as, as Gov. DeSantis opined:
"Citizens who oppose plastic straw ordinances can seek recourse by electing people who share their views."

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