Mike Rogge

Some less-than-likeable environmental bills go inactive

By Mike Rogge

Capitol Update, June 19, 2015 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

At the end of May, fiscal bills had to pass out of the appropriations committee in their house of origin and all bills had to pass off the floor of their respective house by the end of the following week. A number of environmental bills which CMTA opposed failed to meet these deadlines and are now either dead altogether or were made into two year bills to be brought up again in January.

Significant among such bills was AB 708 by Assembly Member Reginald Jones-Sawyer (D-Los Angeles) Consumer Product Content Information. This bill would have required manufacturers to list the 10 most prevalent ingredients by weight on the product and all of the various constituents on their website. There was no provision to protect a trade secret. This bill appeared to lack support on the floor and was moved to the Inactive File without a floor vote.

AB 1159, Product Stewardship Program, Batteries and Sharps, authored by Assembly Member Rich Gordon (D- Menlo Park) failed to get out of Appropriations. This bill would have forced the manufacturers of home-generated sharps and household batteries to form a product stewardship program to establish a program to recover these goods at the end of their useful life and be responsible for their recycling or destruction. The program would have had to be approved by CalRecycle and run under the department’s oversight.

Assembly Member Luis Alejo (D-Watsonville) authored AB 1447, Solid Waste Food and Beverage Packaging, would have created a shortage of PET (PolyethyleneTerephthalate) recyclable packaging by mandating a minimum of 10 percent PET recycled content in all new plastic packaging. This bill was held in the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

Senator Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo) carried SB 47 which dealt with crumb rubber synthetic turf. A 60 Minutesbroadcast raised questions whether or not this material, produced from shredded tires, was safe. The bill would have put a moratorium on its use until a study could be done and released. Many opposed this bill and it was held in the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Five oil related bills were also held up: AB 356 (Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara), AB 1490 (Anthony Rendon, D-Lakewood), AB 1501 (Rendon), SB 545 (Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara) and SB 778 (Ben Allen, D-Santa Monica). Four of which would have added additional requirements, restrictions and costs to oil production, not just new fracking operations.

SB 778 would have required all oil sold in the state to be certified to last 10,000 miles between oil changes. While the oil would have lasted longer, it would have cost two-and-a-half to three times more and would have still been considered a toxic material after spending time in the crankcase. Moreover, the “new”synthetic oil would have been a problem for recyclers if it became mixed with conventional oil.

CMTA remains focused on the environmental bills that are still active and of concern to manufacturers.

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