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September 17, 2009

Comments

Jess S.

Dennis, there's another (more likely) way gov't can encourage the development of waste recycling technologies in addition to tax incentives: creating mandated take-back programs. Europe is already passing the legal responsibility for packaging waste to manufacturers through legislation like the European Packaging Directive.

It would also be worth looking at municipal-level regulations such as pay-as-you-throw systems, in which households pay for every bag of garbage their municipality picks up from them. In these systems, recyclable collections tend to increase significantly.

In other words, there's no one good answer to reduce packaging waste - a balanced system that includes regulatory action, business-focused incentive programs, and behavior change campaigns is the only way to effectively make change to the degree we really need to.

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