VPIRG has been a supporter and champion of the Bottle Bill since it was enacted. The Bottle Bill is and continues to be Vermont’s most successful and most well-known recycling and litter prevention program. Because of the Bottle Bill, we recycle more than 75% of covered beverage containers, while only recycling about 36% of other containers.

But now the time has come to modernize the Bottle Bill for today’s Vermont and use it as a tool to combat plastic pollution.

Among the various Bottle Bill updates VPIRG will be fighting for in the coming session, we’ll be urging the legislature to join states like New York in covering plastic water bottles.

Americans buy 29 billion water bottles a year. For every six bottles people buy, only one is recycled. That leads to a big problem given the fact that it takes at least up to 1,000 years for every single bottle to decompose, leaking pollutants into our soil and water along the way.

By including water bottles we’ll keep much more of those bottles out of landfills – just like we have with other plastic containers covered by the Bottle Bill.

To learn more about why the Bottle Bill is so important and all of our efforts to modernize it (including covering wine bottles and raising the deposit) visit our Bigger, Better Bottle Bill website.

Photo credit: Bo Eide on Flickr via Creative Commons