Green Party of Pennsylvania
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, November 11, 2020
PA Greens: Don’t Call Burning Plastic “Recycling”
The Steering Committee of the Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA, www.gpofpa.org) voted on October 25 to oppose the passage of PA House Bill 1808 (HB 1808) because the bill would expand the definition of recycling to include burning plastic waste as fuel. This bill has already passed the PA House of Representatives and is awaiting a vote in the PA Senate.
GPPA Steering Committee Member Tre Schumacher (Philadelphia) said, “The plastic industry has a waste stream which cannot be recycled. Their solution is to rename burning this waste as ‘advanced recycling.’ Voilà! Their problem is solved, the waste is now recyclable! However, both the converting of plastic into fuel and the burning of this fuel create larger problems, such as creating incentives to use more plastic, increasing carbon dioxide emissions, and other serious environmental and health risks.”
Environmental activists at PennEnviroment said, “The process touted as ‘advanced recycling’ by proponents in PA is by and large the opposite. Instead, existing facilities are primarily turning plastic into fuel to be burned. This network of waste-and-burn facilities overburden low-income communities and communities of color. This has serious climate and health implications and must be halted if we are to beat plastic pollution and climate change.”
"Plastics are not renewable," said Chris Robinson, leader of GPPA's Communication Team. "Plastics don’t grow from sunlight. They are made from fossil fuels extracted from the ground, and each step in that process has the potential to pollute our air, water and soil. When you add incineration of plastic waste to the production of plastic waste, you are adding even more pollution."
This is why the Green Party is opposed to HB1808. Instead, the Green Party proposes real, sustainable practices such as funding mass transit to reduce fuel use, investing in conservation and sustainable agriculture to reduce natural resource extraction, creating 20 million jobs over the next decade to transition to 100% renewable energy, and phasing out landfills and waste incinerators in favor of alternatives including but not limited to source reduction and clean recycling and composting.
Please join the Green Party in the struggle for a sustainable economy and future. The Green Party of Pennsylvania (GPPA) is an independent political party that stands in opposition to the two corporate parties. GPPA candidates promote public policy based on the Green Party’s Four Pillars: ecological wisdom, grassroots democracy, nonviolence, and social justice/equal opportunity. For further information about GPPA, please visit www.gpofpa.org. Please follow GPPA on social media: Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/gpofpa/; Instagram, https://www.instagram.com/pagreenparty/; and Twitter, https://twitter.com/GreenPartyofPA.
For more information, please see:
“PA Legislation part of Nationwide Industry Effort to Push Misleading Plastic ‘Recycling,’” PennEnvironment News Release, July 28, 2020, https://pennenvironment.org/news/pae/new-report-plastic-%E2%80%9Cchemical-recycling%E2%80%9D-means-more-pollution-pennsylvania.
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