Bill Would Clarify Recycleable or Compostable

If you’ve ever wondered which of those bins under your kitchen sink something should go in, you’re not alone. Help might be on the way from Olympia. Dan Frizzell from the Washington State House Democratic Caucus has more.

RAMOS: “Consumers want to do the right thing.  They always want to.  But often, it gets confusing.”

That’s Issaquah state Representative Bill Ramos, and he’s talking about the difficulty we face when deciding whether something we’re about to discard should be recycled, composted, or simply trashed. His bill to help clear things up passed the state House Monday morning. He’s quick to point out it doesn’t tell consumers what to do – that’s up to them and to local regulations.  Instead, it requires manufacturers to be straight with consumers. Terms like “biodegradable” or “decomposable” might make you think something is OK for the compost bin . . . but too often it’s not. The upshot is contaminated material ending up in a landfill because composting companies don’t have the time or staffpower to check on every single item in every single load. Here’s Ramos:

RAMOS: “This is really important because it helps consumers to take products out of the landfill and turn them into compost, which is good for the environment, good for the earth in the long run, and it helps the compost manufacturers so they’re going to get back to us a good product that we’re going to enrich our soils with, so we’re going to grow even better things out of our soil because of the great compost we’re going to get.”

Ramos, a first-term Democrat, picked up a good amount of bipartisan support for his bill, which augurs well for it as it heads to the Senate for the next round of consideration. In Olympia, I’m Dan Frizzell.

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