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(NYPost)   Redemption: Collecting cans and bottles for the deposit is tough work, and the number of people in NYC collecting cans for money has seemingly doubled in the last 2 years   (nypost.com) divider line 12
    More: Interesting, Don't Bother, soda-lime glasses, Central American  
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4366 clicks; posted to Main » on 17 Feb 2013 at 1:10 PM (2 years ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-02-17 10:14:12 PM  
2 votes:

beerbaron: Wow. You guys are really insane about bottles in Michigan! Here we get 5¢ for plastic or aluminum less than 24 ounces, and 10¢ for containers 24 oz and greater. So the hot new size in water bottles is 700 ml which works out to 23.7 ounces, neatly slipping under the 24 oz step up in the tax!

And yes, it is a tax. I have been recycling forever, and the price you get for the bottles was always about the same, but the government realized they were failing to capture some of that money so they instituted the "deposit", which of course goes into the general fund.

And it is a sin tax. Juice and milk (think of the children), wine and liquor (think of the lobbyists) got exempted. So it is soda, beer and water.

Now we need a deposit on Starbucks cups. That makes about half of the rest of the beverage litter around here. I think a buck a cup would be about right.



I was actually a member of the Public Interest Research Group in Michigan that pushed through the Bottle Bill, ages ago. I wasn't there during that time, but the Bottle Bill was a much-needed change in the state.

Prior to Michigan setting up a 10-cent deposit on beer and carbonated beverages, we had can and bottle litter everywhere. Bear in mind, this was in the 1970s, back before the beverage market was so varied. There wasn't any bottled water on the shelves in those days. There wasn't Red Bull. You might have found tea in a jug or glass bottle in those days. The major source of litter in the state was soda cans and bottles (and most of the soda bottles were glass back then), soda can tabs (before the modern pop-top), beer cans and bottles (and ALL the beer bottles were glass back then), and paper waste.

After the Bottle Bill went into effect (1978) the state's roads, streets, parking lots, parks, yards, ditches, beaches, and forests changed dramatically. If the people paying the deposit on their beverages weren't keeping the container to get their money back, then other people were picking them up to get the ten cents themselves.

The mess cleaned itself up in a matter of months.

When you consider how much the state itself saved in clean-up of our parks, roads, etc., you begin to see what sense it made for them to enact this law. Labor, equipment, etc.-- All could be diverted to other tasks, while the people who were formerly doing the littering were cleaning up after themselves.

So yes, it's a "sin tax", but on litterers, not soda and beer drinkers.  And it's not so much a tax as a pre-preemptive littering fine. If you choose to litter, you lose your ten cents. That adds up.

Michigan saw an 80% drop in bottle and can litter after the bill was enacted. That's huge.

I'm glad we have it. You almost never see anything like this in Michigan:
www.litterheroes.co.uk
www.hardrainproject.com
(well, you do see the people making out in public. You don't see them doing it in a setting like this)

www.bbc.co.uk

That's a lot like what the state looked like before the Bottle Bill. Worse in some places, in fact.

Honestly, I think states who don't have a Bottle Bill are being run by people who are both fiscally and environmentally stupid.
2013-02-17 02:17:13 PM  
1 votes:
When I was in HS I wanted a silver show bridle for my horse. I could afford the leather bridle, but not the silver decoration. So I rigged a spear and bag, and rode my horse all over, picking up cans and bottles to pay for the silver. My Mom said our garage smelled like a brewery.

/csb
2013-02-17 01:52:24 PM  
1 votes:

wildcardjack: At least you have deposit redemption to work with. Here in Texas there are people fishing for the cans for weight value and it's about 30 cans to the pound.


Wow, that's pretty bad, and hardly seems worth it.
Just for the heck of it, I looked it up and there are about 33 cans per pound.
Scrap aluminum is about 50 cents a pound, so in order to make one dollar, you would have to find 66 cans, as opposed to 20 cans in NYC.

Even at 5 cents per can, it's not worth it.
The article says she works 8 hours to make $40, and that's probably not consistent.
There's no way I'm going to rummage through filthy disgusting garbage cans for $5 an hour, no less in Texas, where it works out to about $1.60 an hour.
2013-02-17 01:43:42 PM  
1 votes:

Contents Under Pressure: My house is almost paid off. I'll sell it and move in with my relatives before I'd pick garbage to make ends meet.


/shrug

Some would say the same about wearing a suit and tie and being stuck inside a farking office building every g'damn day.

More power to em' I say.
2013-02-17 01:34:57 PM  
1 votes:

ZAZ: This suggests a compromise in the bottle bill expansion debate: Double the rate for large bottles, keep it 5 cents for under a liter.


I think they should up it to 25 cents for everything. Soda was like 50 cents a bottle back when the 5 cent deposit was enacted. More incentive to keep the damn bottles off the street.
2013-02-17 01:32:07 PM  
1 votes:
I like to call them "gleaners", and we have a few regulars in my neighborhood near Beantown. One's an old wizened Chinese woman, one's a big black guy, and one's a really skinny scruffy white dude. It's a lifestyle that welcomes all kinds.
2013-02-17 01:26:40 PM  
1 votes:

gingerjet: Thankfully I live in an apartment building that locks up the garbage and recycling containers indoors and doesn't have a porter to bribe.


I have to ask- Why does it matter?  Regardless of how recycling gets to depot, isn't it mission accomplished from your perspective?
2013-02-17 01:25:46 PM  
1 votes:
My house is almost paid off. I'll sell it and move in with my relatives before I'd pick garbage to make ends meet.
2013-02-17 01:20:49 PM  
1 votes:
The can guys love these i.imgur.com
2013-02-17 01:14:45 PM  
1 votes:

unyon: wildcardjack: At least you have deposit redemption to work with. Here in Texas there are people fishing for the cans for weight value and it's about 30 cans to the pound.

Its sad that even Mexico has more forward thinking container recycling than Texas.


Texas elected Ted Cruz to the US Senate.
2013-02-17 12:16:31 PM  
1 votes:

wildcardjack: At least you have deposit redemption to work with. Here in Texas there are people fishing for the cans for weight value and it's about 30 cans to the pound.


Its sad that even Mexico has more forward thinking container recycling than Texas.
2013-02-17 12:02:41 PM  
1 votes:
At least you have deposit redemption to work with. Here in Texas there are people fishing for the cans for weight value and it's about 30 cans to the pound.
 
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