California's Bottle Bill Encourages Recycling of Spirits Bottles

22 Mar.,2023


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For individuals and industries, going green is a long game. As the daunting effects of climate change becomes an everyday reality—heat waves across the world this summer broke 7,000 records across the globe in what is becoming a grim annual tradition; wildfires in Europe encompassed 1.6 million acres; flooding in Pakistan left the nation’s entire agriculture belt under water—more and more people and companies are making changes both large and small.

The federal government recently passed a climate bill, pledging $370 billion to reduce emissions across the U.S. by 40% by 2030, a hard-fought accomplishment that many environmental activists still feel falls far short of the mark. California, meanwhile, is arguably doing more than any other state in the union to combat climate change. It has codified goals to be carbon neutral by 2045, and ban the sale of new gas-powered cars by 2035. Because California’s economy is the fifth-largest economy in the world, these progressive moves will have an impact that isn’t just felt across the country, but across the globe.

In late August, the California Legislature passed SB 1013, which includes spirits producers in what has been dubbed the “bottle bill.” The bill essentially adds wine and distilled spirits to the state’s container deposit system beginning July 1, 2024. The bill allocates millions of dollars to programs aiming to increase recycling rates, collect more containers and develop new companies adjacent to the business of recycling. It also means individuals can redeem regular bottles for $0.10 a pop.

Parsing the details of SB 1013 is about as sexy as describing a root canal, but, like the dental procedure, it’s a small, but essential step toward improving the overall health and well-being of, in this case, the spirits sector.

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