[Atlanta Journal-Constitution, February 14, 2000]
Manufacturers, Environmentalists Mull Recycling Alliance
Jeff Nesmith - Cox Washington Bureau
Washington -- Environmentalists and plastics recyclers are asking the Turner Foundation and the U.S. affiliate of Mikhail Gorbachev's Green Cross International to support a campaign to increase the recycling rate of plastic bottles.
Among strategies being discussed is an age-old anathema for the beverage industry: getting more states to enact beverage bottle deposit laws.
''Clearly, there has always been interest in the environmental community in increasing the recycling rates,'' said Pat Franklin, executive director of the nonprofit Container Recycling Institute of Arlington, Va. ''But the fact that manufacturing people are considering supporting it really changes the dynamics.''
Franklin said the talk of an environmental industry recycling alliance ''is not a done deal. It's in the formative stages.''
She said industry interest in the proposed alliance is driven by the failure of existing recycling programs to provide enough recycled polyethylene terephthalate, or ''PET,'' plastic to keep pace with a growing demand for the material.
In addition to Franklin's organization, groups involved in the discussions include:
It is much higher in the 10 states with bottle deposit laws, especially Michigan, which requires a 10-cent deposit on each container.