Whitmer OK has made major changes to Michigan’s recycling policies

The long-awaited changes to Michigan’s recycling policy come after Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an eight-bill package into law Thursday that would overhaul the state’s solid waste laws for recycling.

Act – extends from House Bill 4454 medium 4461 – Modernize waste management in Michigan by increasing recycling and composting Overhauling regulations in the Solid Waste Actwhich is known as Section 115 of the Natural Resources and Environment Protection Act.

Among the changes outlined in the package, it would divert more recyclables from landfills and tap into the increasingly circular economy for recyclable and compostable organics.

The move was immediately hailed by supporters as a critical update, with Michigan Recycling Coalition Executive Director Keryn O’Brien Whitmer thanking the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy and the Legislature for advancing the policy.

“The changes to Michigan solid waste laws embodied in this bill package are key to increasing recycling and composting opportunities for residents and businesses across Michigan. … We look forward to supporting local governments as they plan and implement programs and services to manage waste more productively in the future.” ,” O’Brien said in a statement.

The package was Michigan adjourned in the Senate From 2021 it is Wednesday, December 7 before the end of the upper chamber is cleared. The House soon took it up with modifications before approving it and sending it to the governor.

The primary bill, HB 4454, passed the Senate 22-10 and the House voted 74-23 for approval.

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Among other reforms, The bills would help Michigan counties update solid waste management plans Encourages regional cooperation when developing landfill, recycling and composting facilities. Curbside service in larger communities and convenient drop-off sites for counties will become the benchmark standard in a policy update that advocates say The state needs to move towards a circular economy.

Michigan’s dismal 19 percent recycling rate lags behind the national average of 34 percent. The The bill makes it a state target to reach 30 percent by 2029, then increase to 45 percent.

Jim Holcomb, president and CEO of the Michigan chamber, hailed the reforms in a statement as historic and “the kind of pragmatic problem solving that’s good for our environment, Michiganders and businesses.”

“This legislation enables Michigan communities to work in partnership with industry to apply the latest science and a market-driven approach to ensure better recycling and materials management – long overdue in the Great Lakes State.” “We applaud the governor and legislative leadership for working collaboratively on this important issue that will significantly strengthen Michigan’s sustainability efforts and the way everyone works, lives and plays.”

The bipartisan package saw some opposition from Democrats during final passage due to the inclusion of language that would allow manufacturers to use some controversial chemicals and heating methods to break down the plastic.

Other last-minute amendments sought by the waste disposal industry reduced the amount of say local governments have in landfill siting and operations.

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