NWRA Announces Opposition to Proposed Federal EPR Legislation

NWRA Announces Opposition to Proposed Federal EPR Legislation

NWRA Calls on Congress to Incentivize Investment in Domestic Recycling to Strengthen Markets

Arlington, VA – The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) sent a letter to Congress in strong opposition to proposed legislation by Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) and Representative Alan Lowenthal (D-CA) that would enact a federal extended producer responsibility (EPR) law. NWRA believes that the proposals outlined by the senator and congressman would lead to more contamination of the recycling stream and instead, Congress should focus on policy initiatives that would expand the domestic recycling market and encourage minimum recycled content for products.

“There are better ways to address the issue of reducing plastic waste pollution than by product stewardship or extended producer responsibility financing schemes. We have concerns that this legislation may put enormous pressure on our materials recovery facility infrastructure, which could result in increased contamination. Incentivizing entities to make significant investment in domestic market development would have the potential to create greater stability in the existing recycling infrastructure and spur the development of domestic processing facilities,” wrote NWRA President and CEO Darrell Smith.

Among the other provisions in the proposed legislation is a nationwide container deposit, commonly known as a “bottle bill.” Bottle bills do not generate markets for recyclables and a national bottle bill would create a separate system, duplicating logistics and driving up costs. It would simultaneously remove valuable commodities from the recycling stream thereby increasing the cost of curbside recycling.


The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) represents the private sector waste and recycling services industry. Association members conduct business in all 50 states and include companies that manage waste, recycling and medical waste, equipment manufacturers and distributors, and a variety of other service providers. For more information about NWRA, please visit www.wasterecycling.org.

Brandon Wright
National Waste and Recycling Association