Posts Tagged ‘regulatory’

U.S. Limits Microbeads

Posted by GlobalPSC at 11:02 am, January 31st, 2016Comments1

The U.S. has passed a law to ban rinse-off cosmetics that contain synthetic plastic microbeads. The ban takes effect 1 January 2018.

The Microbead-Free Waters Act of 2015 will prohibit “the manufacture and introduction into interstate commerce of rinse-off cosmetics containing intentionally-added plastic microbeads.” The Act specifically includes toothpaste in the type of cosmetics subject to the ban.

 

Guest Blog – Battery Stewardship Moves to the Next Stage in Australia

Posted by GlobalPSC at 2:11 pm, August 13th, 2015Comments4

The Global Product Stewardship Council periodically invites thought leaders on product stewardship and producer responsibility to contribute guest blogs. Our guest blogger for this post is Dr Helen Lewis, Principal of Helen Lewis Research and Chief Executive of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI). 

 

At their last meeting in July, Australian Environment Ministers agreed to continue work on an industry-driven stewardship program for handheld batteries but with a focus on hazardous and rechargeable batteries only.

This is a significant win for Energizer, Duracell and the Consumer Electronics Suppliers Association (CESA), who have argued that battery stewardship for primary batteries would need to be regulated to ensure that all suppliers participate. During a Product Stewardship Institute battery recycling webinar (5/6 November 2014) Energizer’s spokesman advised that they had ‘zero tolerance’ for voluntary stewardship but would work with ABRI to develop a regulatory solution.

Handheld batteries are one of only two product categories that are still listed on the national ‘priority list’ for government action under the Product Stewardship Act. That list identifies products that the Minister for the Environment will consider for regulation or accreditation under the Act.

The Queensland Government is leading negotiations on the battery stewardship program on behalf of all government jurisdictions. A discussion paper, released in March 2014, outlined proposals for battery stewardship that were well received by most stakeholders but failed to secure the necessary level of industry support, particularly from primary battery manufacturers.

Following the Ministers’ decision to refine the scope to rechargeable and hazardous batteries only, a more focused proposal is expected to be developed by key industry associations and brand owners in late 2015 for broader consultation. While the exact scope of the stewardship scheme is yet to be defined, it is likely to include all handheld rechargeable batteries weighing less than 5kg as well as primary button cells. Button and coin cells have been the subject of extensive media coverage in Australia over the past two years due to an increasing number of infants and children presenting at hospitals with life threatening injuries associated with batteries.

The Australian Battery Recycling Initiative will continue to advocate for ‘all battery’ recycling services because these offer the most convenient and environmentally-responsible solution for consumers. Existing battery recycling programs, which are funded by state government agencies, local councils and retailers such as ALDI and Battery World, already collect both primary and secondary batteries.

Nevertheless, the establishment of a national, voluntary stewardship scheme for rechargeable batteries would be a welcome development because it would increase industry engagement and improve the availability of recycling services. ABRI is working on a series of pilot projects for particular battery types to inform the design of a national program. The first of these, for power tool batteries, will commence in September this year.

At the same time ABRI will continue to work on regulatory options for primary batteries. These include stand-alone regulations (similar to the model legislation developed by the battery industry in the US) or extension of the National Television and Computer Recycling Scheme to include primary batteries. If discussions on a voluntary scheme for rechargeable batteries do not reach a successful outcome in 2016 then ABRI will argue that regulations should apply to all handheld batteries.

The views expressed do not necessarily reflect those of the Global Product Stewardship Council.  

Helen Lewis is part-time chief executive of the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative. She has been actively involved in product stewardship initiatives for plastics, packaging and batteries for over 20 years. Helen is a member of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group

 

New Zealand Feedback on Priority Waste Streams

Posted by GlobalPSC at 4:22 pm, April 30th, 2015Comments1

The New Zealand Ministry for the Environment (MfE) has released a summary of submissions on its discussion paper on the prioritisation of waste streams for product stewardship intervention.

Stakeholders generally agreed with the MfE’s criteria for prioritisation but suggested weighting ‘risk of harm’ and ‘resource efficiency’ higher than other criteria. Stakeholders also generally agreed with the MfE’s proposed priority products (electronic and electrical equipment; tyres; agrichemicals and farm plastics; and refrigerants and other synthetic greenhouse gases), but recommended adding packaging and plastic bags for prioritisation.

Mike Mendonca of the MfE (pictured below) announced the summary’s release and reviewed its findings during the recent WasteMINZ Roundup in Auckland, which emphasised product stewardship. In a session with Mike and WasteMINZ Board Chair Darren Patterson, GlobalPSC CEO Russ Martin outlined overseas developments in product stewardship and their implications for New Zealand.

GlobalPSC Advisory Group members Helen Lewis of Helen Lewis Research and John Gertsakis of Infoactiv were also active participants in the Roundup discussions, as was Paul-Antoine Bontinck of the Vinyl Council of Australia.

Public consultations on priority products opened in May 2014.  The GlobalPSC submission developed in conjunction with our Advisory Group is available to GlobalPSC members via our Knowledge Base, under the Frameworks and Harmonisation heading.

 

Calls for Handheld Battery EPR in Australia

Posted by GlobalPSC at 8:01 pm, February 9th, 2015Comments1

The Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI) is calling for producer responsibility legislation for household batteries. ABRI has written to The Hon Greg Hunt, Australia’s Minister for the Environment, asking the government to investigate co-regulation (equivalent to extended producer responsibility, or EPR) for handheld batteries.

ABRI notes the varying levels of support for voluntary and regulatory approaches, plus the recent efforts of the U.S.-based Corporation for Battery Recycling (including three of the largest single-use battery manufacturers) to work with other stakeholders to develop the Model Consumer Battery Stewardship Act. A media release regarding ABRI’s effort is available here.

Australia’s Battery Implementation Working Group (BIWG) was established in late 2013 to develop a framework for a national battery product stewardship approach. Environment Ministers had stated that their preference was for a voluntary approach. Handheld batteries had also been designated as priority products for product stewardship. Research commissioned by the BIWG shows a recycling rate of only 2.7 per cent. Background research and BIWG recommendations for a voluntary approach are available here.

“ABRI would have preferred to see a voluntary battery stewardship scheme established in Australia, but our focus is now on building an appropriate regulatory framework. We are confident that this can be done in a way that meets everyone’s needs,” Helen Lewis, ABRI’s CEO (and member of the GlobalPSC Advisory Group) told the GlobalPSC.

 

Webinar – Battery Stewardship Developments in the U.S. A Joint Government and Industry Regulatory Solution for Single Use + Rechargeable Batteries

Posted by GlobalPSC at 9:52 pm, October 2nd, 2014Comments3

The United States is on the verge of breakthrough legislation for both primary (single-use) and rechargeable batteries. This shift from a voluntary approach to a regulatory approach covering both battery types has coalesced over the past six months, as an increasing number of government agencies have expressed interest in a legislative solution to household battery management. This webinar will discuss the unique differences between the single-use and rechargeable battery industries, key issues that are being addressed to find a unified legislation solution, explore lessons for other countries such as Australia (where consultation is underway on a national battery stewardship scheme), and outstanding challenges faced by US state and local governments, manufacturers, retailers, and other key stakeholders in the year ahead.

The date of the webinar is:

  • if attending from Australia – Nov. 6th at 9 a.m. EST
  • if attending from the US – Nov. 5th at 7 p.m. EST.

Moderated by Scott Cassel, CEO & Founder, Product Stewardship Institute.

Speakers will include:

  • Marc Boolish, Director of Technology, Energizer Battery Manufacturing Inc, and President, Corporation for Battery Recycling
  • Carl Smith, CEO/President, Call2Recycle
  • Jen Holliday, Compliance Program and Product Stewardship Manager, Chittenden County, Vermont
  • Garth Hickle, Product Stewardship Team Leader, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency

Introduction by Russ Martin, CEO, Global Product Stewardship Council and Independent Chair, Australia’s Battery Implementation Working Group.

Register here.

Registration is free for Australian residents thanks to our sponsors the Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI), TES-AMMQueensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection and Canon, in partnership with the GlobalPSC. For details on how to register at no charge please contact Russ Martin at russ@globalpsc.net.

Australian States Ramp Up Tyre Regulation in Parallel with Industry Product Stewardship

Posted by GlobalPSC at 5:56 pm, April 30th, 2014Comments1

Several large Australian states are stepping up regulation of waste tyres in advance of the implementation of an industry-led product stewardship approach. Senior Government officials have told the GlobalPSC that they will do what is necessary to improve tyre management through regulation and work with industry to improve management systems in parallel with the pending industry scheme.

The Victorian Government today gazetted a waste management policy to ban the unsafe stockpiling of waste tyres, partly in response to new commitments by the New South Wales (NSW) Government to tighten regulatory controls on waste tyres.

“In contrast with NSW and South Australia, Victoria does not have effective regulatory requirements for the management of waste tyres,” said Victorian Environment Minister Ryan Smith MP. “Consequently, tyre stockpiles are growing rapidly and will be expected to increase as NSW strengthens its regulation of waste tyres”.

In introducing the policy without delay, Minister Smith highlighted the key risk of improper storage of waste tyres as fire resulting from arson, accidents or bushfires.

Premises that store the equivalent of more than 5,000 waste passenger vehicle tyres or more than 40 tonnes of waste tyres must only store tyres for purposes such as transfer, reprocessing or energy recovery and must store the tyres in ways that minimise the risk of fire. Minister Smith will formally announce the new policy at a conference tomorrow

GlobalPSC Priority Product Stewardship Workshop

Posted by GlobalPSC at 12:45 pm, August 30th, 2013Comments5

18 November, 2013
DHL, 18-22 Salmon St, Port Melbourne, Australia

Australia has released a priority list of products potentially covered under the Product Stewardship Act 2011. The designated products include:
• Waste paint
• End-of-life handheld batteries
• Packaging
• End-of-life air conditioners with small gas charges
• End-of-life refrigerators with small gas charges

The Act provides a framework for establishing voluntary, co-regulatory and regulatory approaches for product stewardship. Australia’s Environment Ministers have also developed plans for paint and battery product stewardship. The GlobalPSC is helping the Commonwealth and state governments facilitate the efforts for batteries and paint.

The GlobalPSC is bringing global leaders on product-specific producer responsibility collection and reprocessing initiatives to help identify and learn from international best practice to assist these efforts. Featured international speakers include:

• Carl Smith, CEO and President, Call2Recycle (North America)
• Alison Keane, Vice President Government Affairs, American Coatings Association
• Mark Kurschner, President, Product Care Association (North America)
• Corinne Faure-Rochu, Director Business Development, Recupyl (France)

Panel sessions will include these speakers and other product-specific experts on batteries and paint from the USA and Australia. A special evening function will enable even greater access to this international line-up for GlobalPSC members. Full program and details are available here.

Attendance is free for GlobalPSC members in proportion to their membership level (5 free for Sustaining Members, 2 for Standard Members and 1 for other categories) but registrations are necessary for catering. Registrations are $299 plus GST for non-members of the GlobalPSC. Event details, registration and payment information are available at http://globalpsc.eventbrite.com.au. Lunch will be provided for registered attendees.

 

The Case for Voluntary Paint Stewardship

Posted by GlobalPSC at 7:12 pm, August 29th, 2013Comments3

In April 2013, Australia’s Environment Ministers added paint, along with handheld batteries, to the Standing Committee on Environment and Water (SCEW) product stewardship work plan.

In June 2013, Australia also released a priority list of products potentially covered under the Product Stewardship Act 2011 (the Act).

The Act provides a framework for establishing voluntary, co-regulatory and regulatory approaches for product stewardship. Under the Act, any future mandatory or co-regulatory approach must be preceded by 12 months notice before a particular product can have such a regulatory approach applied. Waste architectural and decorative paint was included in the priority list.

In the US and Canada, industry support is strong amongst paint manufacturers and trade painters for product stewardship as a means of responsibly managing paint in a way that is less costly and more flexible than alternative options available. In Australia, paint manufacturers received regulatory approval to voluntarily impose a levy to fund a paint collection trial in Victoria. However, the levy was suspended indefinitely due to opposition from major retailers that felt they could not pass any fee increases along to consumers. Paint manufacturers also recently launched Australia’s first trade waste paint collection trial, PaintCare.

For this report, the GlobalPSC was engaged by Sustainability Victoria (SV) and the Australian Paint Manufacturers’ Federation (APMF) to develop a business case for a levy-based voluntary paint product stewardship scheme in Australia, drawing upon international experience and stakeholder consultations.

The final report has been posted in the Knowledge Base available to GlobalPSC members.

GlobalPSC Appoints Russ Martin as CEO and Neil Hastie as President

Posted by GlobalPSC at 2:14 pm, May 25th, 2013Comments2

 

 

 

Whistler, British Columbia – The Global Product Stewardship Council (GlobalPSC) has appointed Russ Martin as Chief Executive Officer of the organisation. During the opening session of the Recycling Council of British Columbia’s Zero Waste Conference, Russ also announced Neil Hastie as the new President.

Russ has over 20 years experience in product stewardship, public policy and sustainability in the US, Australia and Middle East. This includes roles in government and as an advisor to governments and industry. He is Director of consultancy MS2 and is a GlobalPSC founder in addition to serving as President for the first three years of the GlobalPSC’s existence.

We’ve grown the GlobalPSC to over 40 members in 11 countries and put in place a variety of resources to add value to our members, in addition to influencing development of product stewardship across a range of products. I’m pleased to have this opportunity to continue building the GlobalPSC and expanding our network to best learn from the lessons of product stewardship and producer responsibility programs internationally. Neil has been integral to our efforts and his experience with running a leading recovery program is invaluable.” Russ said.

Neil is President and CEO of Encorp Pacific (Canada) with over 15 years experience running extended producer responsibility (EPR) programs in British Columbia, Canada. He previously held a variety of general management positions in retailers across the country.

There is an increasing commitment to corporate sustainability for organizations based in North America and operating globally. Producer responsibility can be one of the pillars in a successful sustainability strategy. Evaluating and tracking national and global trends in the performance and costs for voluntary, co-regulatory and regulated systems is an imperative for robust enterprise risk management. The GlobalPSC assists its members in this analysis. I am enthused by the opportunity to intensify my contribution to the Council and to assist in enhancing value for our current and increasing base of business, government and NGO members.” said Neil.

Recycling in BC: Public Sector Accountability Meets Private Sector Know-How

Posted by GlobalPSC at 8:22 pm, October 8th, 2012Comments0

The Global Product Stewardship Council will periodically invite thought leaders on product stewardship and producer responsibility to contribute guest blogs. This guest blog is by Sandy Sigmund, Vice President, Development & CMO, Encorp Pacific (Canada). Encorp Pacific (Canada) is a Global Product Stewardship Council Foundation Member. 

The province of British Columbia, in July this year, attained the highest score nationally from Extended Producer Responsibility Canada (EPR Canada) for measures making producers wholly responsible for recycling end-of-life product and packaging waste. EPR Canada ranked each jurisdiction by evaluating federal, provincial and territorial EPR policies and programs in place or pending by the end of last year.

“BC is seriously committed to the principles of reducing the amount of waste we produce,” said Terry Lake, BC’s Minister of the Environment. “We’ve worked hard for years to create policies that put responsibility fully in the hands of producers and consumers and we assess our progress continually to take stock of how we are doing and what more we can do”.

The BC Recycling Regulation, a flexible, performance-based regulatory framework within which to operate comes under the authority of the Environmental Management Act and shifts taxpayer-funded responsibility for managing end-of-life products and packaging to producers and consumers.

Not-for-profit stewardship agencies, developed by industry to collect and recycle products at end-of-life, implement industry developed and government approved plans. British Columbians divert close to 20,000 metric tonnes of electronics, 2 million litres of hazardous household waste, 40,000 tonnes of scrap tires and over 1 billion beverage containers from landfills a year. The reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from these programs is equivalent to removing more than 73,000 cars from BC’s roads annually.

The Stewardship Agencies of BC (SABC) emerged as a voluntary council for stewardship agencies and programs. Each regulated product’s manufacturer, distributor or brand owner develops a product stewardship plan and implements a program to collect and recycle their products through SABC.

“After more than 18 years in operation, we have demonstrated that the industry self-managed model meets or exceeds expectations of most stakeholders”, says Neil Hastie, President and CEO, Encorp (Pacific) Canada. He adds, “We recover 80% of all the beverage containers sold in BC and operate without any form of subsidy from any level of government.”

SABC members include Encorp Pacific (Canada), Brewers Distributors Limited, Electronic Products Recycling Association (EPRA), Recycle My Cell, ElectroRecycle, LightRecycle, Switch The ‘Stat, Call2Recycle, BC Used Oil Association (BCUOMA), Tire Stewardship BC (TSBC), Product Care Association, Outdoor Power Equipment Institute of Canada and the Post Consumer Pharmaceutical Stewardship Association. For more information about the SABC and the products recycled go to bcstewards.com.

Encorp Pacific (Canada), one of the largest stewardship agencies, was launched in 1994 to create a province-wide network of industry owned and operated beverage recycling depots; within 4 years 125 were established. The unique structure and flexibility of Encorp allows the agency to concentrate on managing collection and recycling programs while ensuring that stakeholder and consumer interests are addressed. Today, Encorp has a network of 180 independently owned Return It™ depots, mobile collectors, and has contracted 33 partners in transportation and 17 in processing. The Electronic Products Recycling Association (EPRA) and the BC Dairy Council (BCDC) have contracted Encorp to manage their respective collection operations by utilizing Encorp’s existing Return It™ depots.

“Each year our network of owners invest in new locations and upgrades all in keeping with our commitment to enhance the appeal and customer service for our citizens who are doing their part by returning containers for recycling”, says Neil Hastie. He adds, “Encorp combines private-sector efficiencies with a high degree of public-sector transparency and accountability. This transparency provides the public and all interested parties with information about its mission, key objectives, operational and financial performance as well as consumer awareness and educational programs.”

A driving force behind product stewardship is growth. Soon SABC, government and consumers are about to do the next big thing. Governing Boards of the 13 stewardship agencies operating in BC are anticipating the addition of packaging and printed paper to the Recycling Regulation, moving responsibility for recycling these items from municipalities to industry. Industry, municipalities and stakeholders will decide the type of program that will fit their communities, but one model may have municipalities acting as a service provider and to continue collecting through curbside recycling programs.

BC’s Stewardship agencies have demonstrated the benefits in merging public sector accountability with private sector know how, and while we welcome the kudos from EPR Canada, we hope that the Scorecard motivates all jurisdictions to our shared aspiration of fewer new landfill sites and the reduction of energy needed to produce new products from raw materials.

Sandy Sigmund is Vice President, Development & CMO, Encorp Pacific (Canada).

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