GAO ~--~ ?r’oE~~‘illtwI’ t000 *. SOLID WASTE Trade-offs Involved in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation 142685 ,” ., .,, “. I. . . . . . .._.___ . . .._________.._. -.- United States GAO General Accounting Office Washington, D.C. 20648 Resources, Community, and Economic Development Division B-240986 November 14,199O The Honorable Mark 0. Hatfield United States Senate The Honorable James M. Jeffords United States Senate The Honorable Paul B. Henry House of Representatives In response to your August 4, 1989, letter and subsequent discussions with your offices, we agreed to provide information on the potential effects of a national beverage container deposit law. In your request, you noted that the debate on bills that you have introduced to provide for beverage container reuse and recycling has been hampered by a lack of data. For this reason, you asked us to obtain and analyze available information in response to the following questions: l What do existing studies say about the business and environmental effects of beverage container deposit laws? l Are beverage container deposit programs compatible with curbside recycling programs? . Does the American public support national beverage container deposit legislation? Existing studies generally conclude that beverage container deposit laws Results in Brief entail additional capital and operating costs to the beverage industry but also benefit the environment by reducing litter, conserving energy and natural resources, and diverting solid waste away from landfills. However, these studies generally disagree about the magnitude of both the costs and benefits. We believe that quantifying a national law’s potential costs and benefits with a high degree of confidence is unlikely. Although deposit systems can divert potential revenue away from curb- side recycling programs, most states with a deposit law have found that local curbside programs can coexist with deposit systems. Curbside and deposit systems in combination are more costly than either is alone, but deposit systems’ costs are borne primarily by the beverage industry while curbside program costs are borne by municipalities. If curbside and deposit systems in combination continue to divert a greater amount of solid waste away from landfills, as landfill disposal costs increase, a Page 1 GAO/RCED-91-2s Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation , R-240986 r dual curbside/deposit system becomes more cost-effective for municipalities. A telephone survey we conducted indicates that the vast majority of Americans would support a national beverage container deposit law. Further, a number of surveys conducted by others show a high level of public support for deposit legislation at the state and/or national level. Over the past 20 years, Americans have become increasingly concerned Background about the need to reduce litter, conserve energy and natural resources, and reduce the amount of solid waste that enters the nation’s dwindling landfills. To address these concerns, between 1972 and 1983 nine states’ enacted beverage container deposit laws. In addition, national deposit legislation has been proposed in the Congress since 1970. Under such laws, consumers pay a per-container deposit that can be redeemed only if they return their empty containers to retailers. The empty containers are then eventually refilled or recycled. Although deposit laws have been in place for nearly 20 years, their costs and benefits continue to be debated by the laws’ advocates and oppo- nents. Advocates maintain that the laws are an effective and efficient means to significantly reduce litter, energy and natural resource con- sumption, and solid waste. However, opponents maintain that the laws result in substantial additional costs to the beverage industry and are incompatible with more comprehensive curbside recycling programs. Under curbside recycling, residents separate materials-such as glass, aluminum, and newspaper-from their garbage and place them at the curb. The municipality then collects, processes, and eventually recycles these materials. Studies examining the effects of deposit laws have not quantified the Business and laws’ costs and benefits to the extent that they can be weighed to deter- Environmental Effects mine the overall merits of such legislation. Although the studies do not agree about the magnitude of related costs, most of the studies conclude that beverage distributors and retailers incur additional net capital and operating costs for the additional container handling, transportation, and storage to implement deposit systems. In addition to the costs, a concern on the part of industry, especially glass manufacturers, is that ‘Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Oregon, and Vermont have beverage container deposit laws. Page 2 GAO/RCED-91-25 ‘lhde-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation I R-349936 national deposit legislation would affect beverage packaging and con- sumption. For example, the glass industry believes that the additional container handling, transporting, and storing required by a deposit system would encourage distributors, retailers, and consumers to choose plastic bottles or cans over glass bottles, which are heavier, more sus- ceptible to breaking, and not as easy to store. Our analysis shows that glass containers’ market share has fluctuated in both deposit and nondeposit states but, overall, has been declining as the use of cans and plastic bottles has increased rapidly. Glass con- tainers’ share of the beverage market decreased in some states and increased in others after implementation of state deposit laws. However, in addition to deposit laws, other factors, such as consumer preference for cans or plastic bottles, could have affected the market share of glass and other beverage containers. Department of Commerce industry spe- cialists told us that beverage packaging decisions are also influenced by factors such as the price of the container to the bottler and the price of the beverage to the consumer. Our analysis also shows that beverage consumption has fluctuated in both deposit and nondeposit states, likely due to a variety of factors such as health consciousness, demographics, and income. (App. II contains more information on the business effects of deposit legislation.) Regarding environmental benefits, most of the studies conclude that deposit laws have reduced litter, conserved some energy and natural resources, and reduced the amount of solid waste for disposal. For example, studies estimate that state deposit laws have reduced the volume of beverage container litter between 79 percent and 83 percent and the overall amount of solid waste by as much as 6 percent by weight and up to 8 percent by volume. A recent study concluded that deposit law states account for a disproportionately high percentage of the nation’s recycling of beverage containers. Accordingly, deposit laws could play a significant role in helping the nation meet the Environ- mental Protection Agency’s (EPA) %-percent by-weight recycling goal. (App. III contains more information on the environmental effects of deposit legislation.) Page 3 GAO/WED-91-25 ‘Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legblation 0240985 , Although sufficient data do not exist to determine the extent to which Compatibility of curbside recycling programs could be adversely affected by national Deposit Laws and deposit legislation, deposit systems can divert potential revenues-par- Curbside Recycling titularly the proceeds from the sale of aluminum cans-that help offset these programs’ operating costs. However, scrap revenues do not fully Programs offset curbside programs’ operating costs. For example, in a Rhode Island curbside program, total beverage container scrap revenue offsets less than 19 percent of its curbside program’s operating costs. Other curbside programs’ beverage container and other scrap revenues are reported to offset only 15 percent to 40 percent of program operating costs. Further, officials from most deposit law states believe that curb- side and deposit systems are compatible, and all nine deposit law states have some type of curbside or other recycling program. Although curbside and deposit programs in combination are more costly than either one alone, deposit systems’ costs are borne primarily by the beverage industry and its consumers whereas curbside program costs are borne by municipalities. Further, if both systems in combination con- tinue to divert a greater amount of waste away from landfills, as landfill disposal costs rise, a dual curbside/deposit system becomes more cost- effective for municipalities. (App. IV contains more information on the compatibility of deposit systems and curbside programs.) To assess the level of public support for deposit legislation, we designed Public Support for a survey instrument and contracted with a private research firm to con- Deposit Legislation duct a nationwide telephone survey. Our telephone survey results indi- cate that the vast majority of Americans would support a national beverage container deposit law. Forty-four percent would strongly sup- port, and 26 percent would somewhat support, such a law. In contrast, 11 percent would strongly oppose, and 7 percent would somewhat oppose, such legislation. The remaining 12 percent either did not sup- port or oppose such a law or did not respond. Further, the majority of respondents in deposit law states approve of their states’ laws. Sixty- three percent strongly approve, and an additional 19 percent somewhat approve, of their state’s law. In contrast, 6 percent strongly disapprove and 3 percent somewhat disapprove of the laws. The remaining 9 per- cent either did not approve or disapprove or did not respond. A number of similar surveys conducted by others have also shown a high level of public support for deposit legislation at either the national or state level. (App. V provides more details on public support of deposit legislation.) Page 4 GAO/RCED-91.ZS Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legldation R-240986 Although nine states currently have deposit laws and various studies on Conclusions the effects of these laws have been conducted, we do not believe that the effects of deposit legislation have been quantified to the extent that it can be conclusively determined whether a mandatory national deposit system would be advantageous from a strict cost/benefit standpoint. Moreover, on the basis of our review of these studies and discussions with various deposit state officials and others, we believe that quanti- fying the potential costs and benefits with a high degree of confidence is unlikely. Many variables, such as differing marketing considerations and local solid waste conditions and programs, would have to be taken into account; and many assumptions about industry operations, mar- keting decisions, economic conditions, and consumer reactions would have to be made. Given this situation, we believe that the desirability of national beverage container deposit legislation is essentially a public policy decision in which value judgments must be made about the trade- offs between costs and environmental benefits and the desirability of federal involvement in solid waste management, an area that has gener- ally been a local responsibility. To respond to your questions, we identified applicable studies through a literature search and discussions with representatives of EPA, the Department of Commerce, and selected state, local, industry, and envi- ronmental advocacy groups. With these representatives, we also dis- cussed the business and environmental effects of mandatory beverage container deposit programs and their compatibility with curbside recycling programs. In addition, we analyzed data on beverage consump- tion and container market shares for states with and without deposit laws and visited deposit and nondeposit states with curbside recycling programs. Furthermore, we conducted a nationwide telephone survey to determine public acceptance and support for national legislation. More details on beverage container deposit legislation and our objectives, scope, and methodology are contained in appendix I. We discussed the information contained in this report with EPA and Department of Commerce officials and representatives of the National Soft Drink Association, the Beer Institute, and the National Container Recycling Coalition, These officials and representatives generally agreed with the information contained in this report. We have incorporated their comments as appropriate. However, as you requested, we did not obtain official comments on a draft of this report. Page 5 GAO/RCJSD-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation :, r B.240985 As agreed with your offices, unless you publicly announce its contents earlier, we plan no further distribution of this report until 15 days from the date of this letter. At that time, we will send copies to appropriate congressional committees; the Administrator, EPA; Director, Office of Management and Budget; and other interested parties. Copies will be made available to others on request. If you have any questions, please call me on (202) 275-6111. Major con- tributors to this report are listed in appendix VII. Richard L. Hembra Director, Environmental Protection Issues Page 6 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Page 7 GAO/lUXD-@l-26 Trade-offs In Beverage CmtaJner Deposit LegMation Contents Letter 1 Appendix I 12 Background and History of Deposits on Beverage Containers The Beverage Industry and How Deposit Legislation 12 14 Methodology Works The Merits of Deposit Legislation Are Debated 17 Objectives, Scope, and Methodology 18 Appendix II 22 Business Effects Effects on Beverage Retailers and Distributors Effects on Beverage Consumption 22 24 Effects on Beverage Container Market Shares 26 Appendix III 31 Environmental Effects Views of Deposit Legislation, Opponents and Advocates Results of Prior Studies 31 32 Appendix IV 36 Compatibility of Views of Deposit Legislation, Opponents and Advocates Results of Available Studies 36 36 Curbside Recycling Curbside Program Costs and Benefits 38 and Deposit Legislation Appendix V 39 Public Support for Results of GAO’s Public Opinion Survey Other Surveys Also Show Support for Deposit Legislation 39 41 Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix VI 43 GAO’s Public Opinion Survey Page8 GAO/WED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Contents Appendix VII 50 Major Contributors to This Report Bibliography 51 Tables Table I. 1: Summary of State Deposit Laws 14 Table II. 1: Changes in Market Shares of One-Way Beer 29 Bottles in Deposit and Nondeposit States Between 1977and1989 Table 11.2:Changes in Market Shares of Beer Cans in 30 Deposit and Nondeposit States Between 1977 and 1989 Table 11.3:Changes in Market Shares of Refillable Beer 30 Bottles in Deposit and Nondeposit States Between 1977and1989 Table III. 1: Roadside Litter Reductions in Deposit States 32 as Cited by Prior Studies Table V. 1: Public Support for State Deposit Laws as Cited 42 by Prior Surveys Figures Figure 1.1: How the Beer and Soft Drink Industries Work 15 Figure 1.2: How a Deposit System Works 17 Figure 11.1:National Beer Consumption Rose From 1966 25 to 1988 Figure 11.2:National Soft Drink Consumption Rose From 25 1966 to 1986 Figure 11.3:National Beer Container Market Shares From 28 1966 to 1989 Figure 11.4:National Soft Drink Container Market Shares 29 From 1966 to 1986 Figure III. 1: Beer and Soft Drink Containers as a Portion 34 of the Municipal Solid Waste Stream (by Weight) Figure V. 1: Nationwide Support for National Deposit Law 40 Is Strong Figure V.2: Support for National Deposit Law Is High 40 Among Residents of Deposit States Figure V.3: Approval of State Deposit Laws Is High 41 Among Residents of Deposit States Page 9 GAO/WED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Abbreviations EPA Environmental Protection Agency GAO General Accounting Office NSDA National Soft Drink Association Page 10 GAO/RCJXI-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation w Page 11 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legblation “. .,. PI= bsground and Methodology Over the past 20 years, Americans have become increasingly concerned about the environment and the need to reduce litter, conserve energy and natural resources, and reduce reliance on landfills. Many solutions to these problems have been offered, including litter control laws, bans on certain types of packaging, and comprehensive recycling programs. One action that several states have taken and that has been proposed 01 a national basis is beverage container deposit legislation, which for the most part focuses on beer and soft drink containers. Advocates of such legislation assert that deposit laws reduce litter and solid waste, conserve energy and resources, and increase environmental awareness at no governmental expense. Opponents assert that deposit legislation addresses only a small portion of the waste stream at the expense of selected industries, hurts more comprehensive recycling efforts, and is a costly and inefficient way to reduce litter and waste. Late in the 1800s beer and soft drinks were available almost entirely at History of Deposits on taverns or drug stores. Beer was stored in kegs, soft drinks in dis- Beverage Containers pensers, and both were served for consumption on the premises. Both beverages gradually became more available in bottles that were filled at local breweries or soft drink bottlers and sold for home consumption. Until late in the 194Os, beer was packaged almost exclusively in refill- able glass bottles that could be reused up to 30 times. Most soft drinks were also sold in refillable bottles through the 1950s. A deposit, volunta- rily imposed by the brewer or bottler, helped ensure that the consumer returned the bottle. In 1935, brewers began packaging beer in nonrefillable cans. The glass industry later introduced a one-time-use bottle, commonly referred to as the “one-way” bottle. During World War II, beer was shipped in cans and one-way bottles to the Armed Forces. In the postwar period, the can industry and its chief supplier, the steel industry, joined in a concerted, effective promotion of the beverage can. By 1970, nearly 40 percent of packaged soft drinks and 76 percent of packaged beer were sold in one- way bottles and cans. By 1986, the market share of one-way bottles and cans’ increased to about 86 percent for soft drinks and over 91 percent for beer. Representatives from the beer industry state that the switch to one-way containers for beer was due to consumer acceptance of its con- venience. Others interpret the switch as a result of dual pressures from ‘The aluminum can was introduced in the early 1960s. Since 1978, the majority of beverage cans have been made out of aluminum rather than steel. Page 12 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix I Background and Methodology the metal can industries to sell containers and from retail stores to reduce handling of returned containers. As the market share of refillable bottles and thus the portion of bev- erage containers with deposits dwindled, interest grew in proposals to mandate deposits on beverage bottles and cans. Between 1972 and 1983, deposit laws became effective in nine states-Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Oregon, and Vermont. The primary goal of these laws was to reduce litter and conserve energy in an attempt to counteract the effects of a “throwaway” society. Deposit laws have also been seen as a way to reduce solid waste and save dwindling landfill space. California in 1987 enacted a beverage container redemption law in which redemption centers rather than retailers redeem beverage containers. In 1988, Florida adopted a dis- posal-fee system that affects beverage and other containers. As of October 1, 1992, a disposal fee of 1 cent will be levied on any container that is not recycled at a 50-percent rate. Several other states have also recently considered enacting some form of deposit legislation. Table I. 1 shows the major provisions of the nine state deposit laws. Page 12 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix I Background and Methodology Table 1.1:Summary of State Deporit LOWS Date deposit law State effective Provisions Connecticut . January 1980 Minimum Went deposit Handling fee: 2 cents for soft drinks, 1.5 cents for beer ---. -~- -- Delaware January 1983 Minimum 5cent deposit Exempts aluminum cans Exempts containers larger than 2 quarts Handling fee: 20 percent of deposit .___-- Iowa July 1979 Minimum 5cent deposit Handling fee: 1 cent -- -_--- ------- Maine January 1978 _Minimum 5cent deposit _----- Handling fee: 3 cents Massachusetts January 1983 Minimum 5cent deposit Handling fee: 2 cents Michigan December 1978 Minimum. IO-cent deposit ___-.._ --- ---- Handling fee: none New York September 1983 Minimum 5cent deposit Exempts containers larger than 2 gallons Handling fee: 1.5 cents --_---.-- Oregon October 1972 Minimum 2cent deposit on refillable - containers, 5cent deposit on others _________ -_-.--...-..----_ -- Handling fee: none Vermont July 1973 Minimum 5cent -- deposit Handling fee: the greater of 20 percent of the deposit amount or 3 cents National deposit legislation has been proposed in the Congress since 1970. In 1989, national beverage container deposit bills H.R. 586 and S. 932 were introduced. The purposes of the bills are to combat litter, con- serve energy and resources, and reduce municipal solid waste. The bills mandate a minimum deposit of 5 cents on every container of soda, beer, and mineral water sold. The Beverage Industry facturers make concentrate, which they sell to bottlers. The bottlers and How Deposit make the concentrate into soft drinks, package soft drinks in bottles and Legislation Works cans, and distribute them to retailers. For beer, the brewer is also the bottler. Brewers sell beer to wholesalers, which then distribute the beer Y to retailers. Retailers for soft drinks and beer include grocery stores, restaurants, and bars. (See fig. 1.1.) Page 14 GAO/RCEDBl-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix I Background and Methodology Flgure 1.1: How the Beer and Soft Drink Industries Work Brewer Concentrate Manufacturer Produces and Bottles Beer Produces Soft Drink Concentrate Contalner Manufacturer Produces Bottles and Cans Distributor Bottler/Distributor Distributes Beer Bottles and Distributes Soft Drinks Retailer Page 16 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix I Background and M&hodology In recent years, soft drink concentrate manufacturers have purchased bottling companies and other bottlers have been merging. Consequently, many soft drink bottlers have consolidated their operations. Likewise, brewers have become more centralized in recent years and dwindled in number. Deposit laws require that retailers pay a deposit, typicaily a 5-cent min- imum, for each bottle or can of soda or beer they purchase from distrib- utors. In turn, each consumer pays a deposit to retailers for each bottle or can of soft drinks or beer purchased. The.consumer then redeems the empty bottle or can at a store and recovers the deposit. The retailer returns the empty container to the distributor who refunds the retailer’s deposit. In seven of the nine states, the retailer also receives a handling fee from the distributor, ranging from 1 cent to 3 cents for each container redeemed. The beverage distributor may recycle, refill, or landfill the empty bottles and cans. Figure I.2 displays how deposit sys- tems operate. 2Although each of the nine state deposit laws establishes minimum deposit amounts, none of the laws limit the deposit amount that distributors may charge retailers. Further, while all of the deposit laws apply to beer and soft drinks, several of the laws also apply to liquor, wine, wine coolers, and mineral water. Two of these laws place higher deposit amounts on wine and/or liquor bottles. Page 16 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Apmndix I Background and Methodology Figure 1.2: How a Deposit System Works Beverages Are Sold Empty Containers Are and Deposits Are Pald Redeemed for Deposits Dlstrlbutor Consumer 1 I Beverage I Empty Bottle 1 1 Bev&age Empty bottle I + $i- Distributor Beverage container deposit legislation involves many aspects of the bev- The Merits of Deposit erage industry, including can and bottle manufacturing; beverage pro- Legislation Are duction; and beverage bottling, distribution, and sales. A number of Debated container, beverage, and retailer trade associations recently formed the Coalition Against Forced Deposits. Those who support deposit bills include the League of Women Voters, the United States Public Interest Research Group, environmental groups, and other nonprofit organiza- tions. Such groups are represented in the National Container Recycling Coalition, which supports deposit laws. Arguments against mandatory deposit legislation generally center around the adverse effects on industry, while the arguments for deposit laws focus on benefits to the environment. Detailed discussions of these arguments and the business and environmental effects of deposit legislation are contained in appen- dixes II and III. Page 17 GAO/RCED-91-26 Tradeoffs in Beverage Container Deposit Leglelatlon Appendix I Background and Metlwdology By letter dated August 4, 1989, Senators Mark 0. Hatfield and James M. Objectives, Scope,and Jeffords and Representative Paul B. Henry requested that we provide Methodology information on the potential effects of national beverage container deposit legislation. Their letter noted that the congressional debate on bills that they had introduced to provide for beverage container reuse and recycling has been hampered by a lack of data. In subsequent dis- cussions with their offices, we agreed to obtain, analyze, and provide information on the following: 1. What do existing studies say about the business and environmental effects of beverage container deposit laws? 2. Are beverage container deposit programs compatible with curbside recycling programs? 3. Does the American public support beverage container deposit legislation? To answer question one, we performed a literature search and held dis- cussions with representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Commerce, beverage industry, solid waste management organizations, the National Container Recycling Coalition, and deposit law states to identify studies relating to the potential effects of a national deposit law or the effects of state deposit laws. As agreed with the requesters’ offices, we did not test the validity of the individual studies. In addition, we supplemented our review of the studies with dis- cussions of business and environmental effects with the representatives noted above. These studies are listed in the bibliography. To obtain additional information on the potential business effects of deposit legislation, we performed ouriown analyses of packaging trends and consumption for soft drinks and beer based on beverage container market shares and consumption data provided by the soft drink and beer industries. These analyses included comparisons between deposit and nondeposit states and between deposit states’ trends before and after passage of their deposit laws. Although we tried to obtain data for the years 1966-1989, comparisons were limited for soft drinks because we were unable to obtain soft drink container market shares by state and were able to obtain soft drink consumption data by state only for the years 1976-1978 and 1981-1984. For beer, we obtained container market shares by state from the Beer Institute for all the states for the years 1977 and 1982-1989. In addition, we obtained container market Page 18 GAO/RCED-91.26 Tradeoffs in Beverage Container Deposit Leglelation Appendix I h&ground and Methodology shares for several deposit states for some of the other years, specifically 1970,1971,1976, and 1978-81. From state recycling officials, we obtained beer and soft drink container redemption rates for seven of the nine deposit law states: Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Oregon, and Vermont. These data were not available for Delaware and Maine and the nondeposit law states. To address question two, we examined three major studies and other information on the compatibility of deposit systems and curbside recycling programs. We also visited three deposit and two nondeposit states with curbside recycling programs to interview state officials and private research organizations. Municipalities with curbside recycling programs keep inconsistent financial data, and different municipalities have different ways of accounting for recycling rates and costs. In addi- tion, often landfill fees do not reflect the real cost of landfill space. Without knowing the real cost of landfilling, we were not able to deter- mine conclusively the financial impact of taking beverage containers from curbside recycling. In any event, different municipalities have various types of curbside programs. Thus, it is difficult to compare pro- grams or draw conclusions about all curbside recycling programs from an examination of a specific community’s program. To answer question three, we designed a survey instrument and con- tracted with Westat, a private research corporation, to conduct a nation- wide telephone survey. As discussed in appendix V, the survey polled respondents on their support for a national beverage container deposit law and their own state’s deposit law, if appropriate. Study Design We hired a contractor to conduct a national telephone survey using a stratified, random digit dialing procedure. Random digit dialing is a method to obtain random samples of households and to minimize problems of access to nonlisted and yet-to-be listed telephones. This pro- cedure does not, however, address the issue of random selection of household members to ensure the best representation of the public views. Several techniques are available to obtain a representative sample of the population, When cost and time factors were considered, we instructed the contractor to use an “informant” approach. In an informant approach, we asked the respondents to indicate their views and those of members of their household over the age of 18. By Page 19 GAO/RCRD-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix 1 Bnckground and Methodology weighting these views together, we obtained an estimate of the adult public’s views on the questions. The weighted aggregated results are reported in appendixes V and VI. Sampling Procedure Respondents were drawn from two strata. The first consisted of residen- tial telephone numbers located in the nine states that currently had deposit laws in effect. These states were Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, Oregon, and Vermont. The second stratum consisted of the remaining 39 states (excluding Hawaii and Alaska). The contractor was directed to complete about 500 calls in each of the two strata, using up to 3 retries before abandoning that telephone number. In total, 3,487 calls were placed to complete 1,016 calls. We obtained 359 refusals and 184 incompletes (including 133 callbacks, 48 language problems, and 3 other problems). Consequently, we obtained a 65.2-percent response rate (i.e., completes/(completes + refusals + incompletes)). An additional 1,928 calls were made to obtain the 1,016 completed calls. These additional calls resulted in busy, no answer, non- working, or nonresidential telephone numbers. The ;-esults of the telephone calls were weighted for census characteris- tics, and aggregated estimates were made to about 182 million adults. Deposit state results are estimated for about 33.4 million adults, and nondeposit state results are estimated for about 148.6 million adults. Estimates and the accompanying sampling errors are reported in appendix VI. As with all sample surveys, this survey is subject to sampling error, which defines the upper and lower bounds of the estimates made from the survey. Sampling errors for the estimates in this report were calcu- lated at the 95-percent confidence level; this means that 19 out of 20 times, the sample survey procedure used would produce an interval cap- turing the true value. All sampling errors for the estimates in this report are listed in appendix VI on a copy of the questionnaire. Limitations The reader should be aware of some limitations in this study. First, because a random digit dialing procedure was used, people who do not have a telephone are not represented in this study. The bias this ” introduces is represented to the extent that behavior associated with deposit legislation is related to telephone ownership. Page 20 GAO/RCEDBl-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix I Background and Methodology . A second limitation comes from the use of the informant approach. This approach introduces bias to the extent that the person who is answering the telephone is able to know the views of other household members. Since the activity of collecting and returning bottles and cans would affect the entire household, we assumed that members in the household would know the views of other household members. We chose not to use the alternative approach of randomly selecting a respondent once a household was contacted because of cost and time factors. A third limitation exists since we achieved a 66.2-percent response rate. Our results are limited to the extent that the remaining 34.8 percent, who did not participate in the study, may hold views that differ from our respondents’. We discussed the information presented in this report with EPA and Department of Commerce officials and representatives from the National Soft Drink Association, the Beer Institute, and the National Container Recycling Coalition. These officials and representatives gener- ally agreed with the information contained in this report. We incorpo- rated their comments where appropriate. However, as requested, we did not obtain official comments on a draft of this report. We performed our work from November 1989 to August 1990 in accor- dance with generally accepted government auditing standards. Page 21 GAO/RCED-91.26 Trade-offn in Beverage Container Dcqoait Legislation Appendix II Business Effects Opponents of beverage container deposit legislation assert that the laws increase costs to the beverage industry, reduce sales, and cause changes in the way beverages are packaged, thereby adversely affecting some container manufacturers. Although most of the studies we examined concluded that deposit laws entail additional costs to the beverage industry, these studies’ assessments of the magnitude of the costs dif- fered. While many of the studies observed changes in beverage con- sumption and/or container market shares following the enactment of deposit laws, several of these studies noted that the changes were short- lived and/or not resulting solely from the deposit laws. Similarly, our analysis and discussions with government officials suggest that the observed changes may be due to such factors as changing consumer demographics and preferences rather than only the presence of deposit laws. However, because data on the multitude of factors that affect bev- erage consumption and container selection could not be quantified, we could not determine the contribution of these various factors to changes in container mix or consumption. Representatives of beverage retailers and distributors assert that the Effects on Beverage capital and operating costs to implement deposit systems hurt retailers Retailers and and distributors because of the additional transportation, storage, and Distributors labor costs that are required under deposit laws. In addition, they main- tain that deposit laws lower beverage consumption. Advocates of deposit legislation argue that unclaimed deposits and scrap revenue offset the distributors’ costs. Furthermore, they point out that under deposit laws, the cost of disposing of used beverage containers is borne by those who produce, distribute, sell, and consume beverages. In con- trast, in states without deposit laws, public funds help pay for the dis- posal of used beverage containers, which, in effect, subsidizes distributors, retailers, and consumers of beverages. We identified and reviewed seven studies on the business effects that beverage container deposit legislation has on beverage retailers and dis- tributors. Three of these studies were commissioned by the beverage industry, one was commissioned by a food retailer trade association, and three studies were prepared for deposit state governments. These studies are listed in the bibliography. Retailer Costs Retailers incur additional costs under deposit laws because they must sort, store, and account for redeemed beverage containers. These costs are partially offset in most deposit states by a handling fee paid by the Page 22 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix II Business Effects distributor to the retailer. These fees range from 1 cent to 3 cents per container. Three of the studies we examined addressed retailer costs. A study per- formed by the Food Marketing Institute in 1986 found that retailers’ redemption costs ranged from 2.4 cents to 3.2 cents per container, depending on the size of the store and type of container. The study noted that 70.2 percent of this cost was for labor, 18.4 percent for storage space, and 11.4 percent for other expenses such as investment and operating costs. A March 1990 study of New York’s deposit law commissioned by the governor of New York concluded that the retailer cost of handling containers is greater than the 1.5-cent handling fee that retailers receive from distributors under New York’s deposit law. The report also indicated that these costs are generally passed on to con- sumers through increases in the retail price of beverages or in the prices of other goods sold by the retailers. A 1985 study of deposit law costs to retailers in New York, commissioned by the state of New York, also con- cluded that costs exceed the 1.5-cent handling fee. The study also points out that the discrepancy between handling costs and the handling fee varies greatly across types of stores, return systems, and geographic areas. Distributor Costs To collect empty beverage containers from retailers, distributors incur additional transportation, storage, and labor costs. In addition, as men- tioned previously, most deposit laws require distributors to pay retailers a small handling fee per container. These costs are partially offset by revenue that distributors receive from selling empty beverage con- tainers as scrap and, in most states, by deposits not claimed by consumers. The three studies that examined the costs of deposit laws to distributors reached different conclusions about the net cost of the law. Two studies sponsored by the soft drink industry-one prepared in 1989 for the Michigan Soft Drink Association and the other in 1988 for the Massa- chusetts Soft Drink Association-concluded that distributors’ costs of deposit legislation exceed scrap revenue and unclaimed deposits by $14.2 million in Michigan and $1.4 million in Massachusetts. The third study, prepared in 1989 for the state of Michigan’s Department of Nat- ural Resources, estimated that distributors’ costs of complying with the state’s deposit law in 1988 was $70 million but that scrap revenues and unclaimed deposits totaled between $113 million and $118 million. Page 23 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix II Business Effecta Accordingly, the report implies a net gain to distributors of between $43 million and $48 million. An additional study examined the combined costs of deposit laws to beer and soft drink distributors and retailers. This 1989 study, spon- sored by Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc., a large brewer, examined the costs of Vermont’s and New York’s deposit laws and concluded that the net cost to retailers and distributors is $2.6 million per year for oper- ating Vermont’s deposit law and $124 million per year for operating New York’s law. The study further concluded that in Vermont these costs resulted in higher beverage prices to consumers. A draft report by the Research Triangle Institute, a research firm that has studied deposit legislation issues for EPA in the past, indicated that, based on their review of the issue, whatever the direction of the price change caused by deposit laws, the magnitude is quite small. Beverage and container manufacturing industry representatives argue Effects on Beverage that higher beverage prices and the inconvenience of the deposit system Consumption to consumers lower beverage consumption. Decreases in consumption could adversely affect beverage retailers, distributors, and producers as well as beverage container manufacturers who would produce and sell fewer bottles and cans. However, other factors also affect beverage consumption. Although several of the studies observed some declines in beverage con- sumption in states following the enactment of deposit legislation, most of the studies concluded that the declines are short-term and only par- tially attributable to deposit laws. For example, studies that examined deposit laws’ effects on consumption in New York and Michigan noted that increased legal drinking ages and/or price increases unrelated to deposit legislation contributed to the declines in consumption. Since 1970, Americans have increased their per capita consumption of beer and soft drinks. (See figs. II.1 and 11.2.) Rates of beer consumption rose annually between 3 percent and 9 percent in the 19709, at a slower rate in the early 1980s. Since the mid-1980s, beer consumption has remained essentially steady with periodic slight increases and de- creases. Soft drink consumption has risen at a higher rate than beer consumption. Page 24 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Cmtdner Deposit L&dation Appendix II Business Effects Figure 11.1:National Beer Consumption Rose From 1966 to 1966 500 12 oz. wrvlngs par capita 450 400 350 300 100 1955 lsw 1970 1972 1974 1976 1978 lee0 1982 1984 1988 1955 YOU Source: GAO with Beer Institute data Figure 11.2:National Soft Drink Consumption Rose From 1965 to 1966 600 12 oz. contaInon per csplts 450 400 350 300 250 200 100 1965 1967 196s 1971 1973 1975 1077 1979 1981 1963 1955 1955 Yaar Source: GAO with NSDA data Page 25 GAO/RCEDBl-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation AppendixII Businem~ Effects On the basis of consumption data we obtained during our review, per capita beer consumption dropped in seven of nine states after implemen- tation of deposit laws. In five of these seven states, the declines reversed the previous year’s growth in consumption. However, in two of these five states, within 6 years per capita consumption returned to and exceeded the levels experienced in the year before the deposit laws had become effective. Such soft drink data are available only for three states and show that consumption decreased in two of the states after imple- mentation of deposit legislation. Our analysis shows that per capita beer consumption changed substan- tially even in states without deposit laws during the early 1980s when most deposit laws were in effect. Between 1980 and 1984, beer con- sumption increased in 16 states without deposit laws and decreased in the remaining 25 states. The increases ranged from 0.5 percent to 12.3 percent while the decreases ranged from 0.1 percent to 16.3 percent. Although soft drink per capita consumption increased between 1981 and 1984 for nearly all states without deposit laws, the increases ranged from 4.6 percent to 40.6 percent while the decreases ranged from 4.5 percent to 17.1 percent, The variety of consumption changes in states without deposit laws indicates that factors other than deposit laws affect consumption. We also discussed consumption trends with beverage industry special- ists at the Department of Commerce who study beer and soft drink con- sumption trends. According to their statements, several factors influence beverage consumption patterns, including income, health con- sciousness, and changing demographics. Some deposit law opponents are concerned that deposit laws may cause Effects on Beverage significant changes in the way beverages are packaged and thereby Container Market adversely affect some container manufacturers. For example, glass Shares container manufacturers argue that deposit laws cause distributors, retailers, and consumers to choose cans and plastic bottles over glass bottles because cans and plastic bottles are lighter in weight, do not break easily, and are easy to store.’ As a result, the glass container man- ufacturing industry maintains that deposit laws cause a loss of jobs in 1In the past, many assumed that deposit laws would cause a shift towards refillable glass bottles. Although this shift could increase the glass containers’ overall market share, it could reduce the number of glass bottles manufactured-and so the number of jobs in the glass industry-because refillable bottles can be reused many times. However, glass container manufacturers’ current concern is that deposit laws cause market shifts away from glass bottles towards cans and plastic bottles. Page 26 GAO/RCEDSlIB Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix II Budnesa Ef’fects their industry. To assess deposit laws’ effects on beverage packaging, we (1) examined existing studies on this issue, (2) analyzed available national and state beverage-packaging trend data, and (3) discussed with government container specialists the factors that influence bev- erage-packaging decisions. Existing Studies Although several studies predicted that deposit laws would cause shifts away from nonrefillable bottles and cans towards refillable bottles, other studies concluded that the shift may be short-lived. In addition, some of these studies emphasize that (1) major packaging changes have also occurred in states without deposit laws and (2) not all of the pack- aging changes in deposit law states can be attributed to deposit legislation. GAO’s Analysis of We obtained and analyzed available packaging trend data for the Beverage-PackagingTrend deposit law states. Because packaging trends have been changing nationwide, we also obtained and analyzed available packaging data for n-c, UizLit the nation and for states without deposit laws, National packaging trend data for soft drinks were available for the years 1966 through 1985. National packaging trend data for beer were available for the years 1966 through 1989. State packaging trend data for beer were available for only 1977 and 1982-1989. Since two of the nine state deposit laws were enacted prior to 1977, we were able to pro- vide a “before and after” deposit law packaging analysis for only the remaining seven deposit law states. Because state packaging trend data are not available for soft drinks, we could not provide an analysis for changes in state soft drink packaging trends. Our analysis shows that national beverage container market shares for soft drinks and beer have changed dramatically since 1965. As figures II.3 and II.4 show, the most dramatic change in national packaging trends has been the decline in the use of refillable bottles. During this period, the market share of cans has steadily grown while the market share of one-way bottles has remained relatively steady. For soft drinks, plastic bottles’ market share grew rapidly after plastic bottles were introduced in 1978 but has leveled off in recent years. Page 27 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-off~ in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix II Bueinem Effecta Flgure 11.3:Natlonal Beer Container Market Shares From 1965 to 1999 loo Pwmnl 90 60 NJ 00 80 -- 10 -. 0 1900 1961 1909 1011 1973 1078 ion 1979 1981 1983 1986 lW7 1989 YOU - cans I. I I one-waybottles m reflllsble bottls8 Source: GAO with Seer Institute data Page 28 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix II Business Effects Figure 11.4:Natlonal Soft Drink Container Market Shares From 1965 to 1985 109 Potwnl 90 80 70 60 \ 80 40 30 20 10 m lpB5 1967 1969 1971 1979 1975 1077 1979 1981 1983 19e5 YSSr - cans - - -- oneway bottles B refillablebottles l mmm pla8ticbottles Source: GAO with NSDA data As shown in tables II.1 through 11.3,changes in packaging trends have occurred in states both with and without deposit laws. For example, table II.1 shows that the use of one-way beer bottles declined in five of the seven deposit law states we examined. About half of the states without deposit laws also experienced declines in the use of one-way bottles during this period. Table 11.1:ChanQtb8 In Market Shares of One-Way Beer Bottle0 in Deposit and Decline No change Increase Nondeposit 1989 States Between 1977 and -Deposit state9 -__.-.---- 5 0 2 Nondeposit states 21 2 18 aData from Oregon and Vermont are not included because they enacted deposit laws before 1977 Page 29 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix II . Business Effects As shown in table 11.2,beer cans’ market share increased in most deposit and nondeposit states. Table 11.2:Changes in Market Shares of Beer Cans In Deposit and Nondeposlt Decline No change Increase States Between 1977 and 1989 Deposit states8 2 0 5 -.~ Nondeposit states 9 2 30 aData from Oregon and Vermont are not included because they enacted state deposit laws before 1977. As shown in table 11.3,the market share increased for refillable beer bottles in deposit states. Nonetheless, such an increase also occurred in 6 of the 41 nondeposit states. Table 11.3:Changes in Market Shares of Refillable Beer Bottles In Deposit and Decline No change Increase Nondeposlt States Between 1977 and StateSa 0 1 1989 Deposit 6 Nondeposit states 24 11 6 ‘Data from Oregon and Vermont are not included because they enacted state deposit laws before 1977. Although deposit law states experienced substantive changes in container market shares, not all of these changes were in the same direc- tion. Further, states without deposit laws also experienced changes in container market shares, again, not all in the same direction. Accord- ingly, it is clear that factors other than deposit legislation also affect beverage packaging decisions -an observation made by industry spe- cialists at the Department of Commerce. According to officials from the Department of Commerce, in addition to other factors, packaging deci- sions are influenced by consumer preferences and, most importantly, the price of the container to bottlers and the price of the beverage to con- sumers. A draft report by the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Mines shows that cans and plastic containers are less expensive to pro- duce, fill, and transport than glass bottles. Accordingly, the glass bottle’s static market share may be largely due to its higher costs. Because it is difficult to determine the precise extent that deposit laws affect container market shares, it is not clear to what extent the laws result in job losses in the container manufacturing industry. Page 39 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix III Environmental Effects Although opponents of beverage container deposit legislation disagree, most of the studies we examined concluded, and officials from deposit states generally concurred, that deposit laws have resulted in environ- mental benefits. The studies and officials maintain that the laws have significantly reduced litter, conserved some energy and natural resources, and diverted waste away from landfills. Further, several studies concluded that a disproportionately large percentage of the nation’s recycling is taking place in deposit law states. Accordingly, deposit laws could play a significant role in helping the nation meet EPA’S 25-percent solid waste recycling goal. The arguments of opponents against and advocates for deposit legisla- Views of Deposit tion generally do not center on whether certain environmental benefits Legislation, Opponents could be realized through deposit legislation but rather on the relative and Advocates importance of such legislation to overall efforts to address the nation’s solid waste problem. Opponents’ Arguments Opponents of beverage container deposit legislation claim that such laws Against Legislation do not appreciably improve the environment. They give the following reasons: . Solid waste is not reduced significantly, because beverage containers comprise less than 5 percent of the waste stream. . Deposit legislation creates a costly network for recycling because bev- erage distributors are not efficient collectors of used beverage containers. . Beverage containers are already recycled at a high rate without deposit legislation. Advocates’ Arguments for Deposit law advocates claim that deposit laws have a substantial and Legislation beneficial effect on the environment in the following ways: . Litter is dramatically reduced. . Solid waste is reduced, and a significant portion of EPA’S recycling goal can be met. l Energy and resource savings are realized as industry uses recycled rather than virgin material. . Recycling of other materials is encouraged, because deposit laws create a recycling infrastructure and make the public more aware of the need to recycle. Page 31 GAO/RCEDBl-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix III Environmental Effects The studies we examined address the above arguments to the extent Results of Prior that they document that deposit laws have reduced litter and solid Studies waste by encouraging recycling of beverage containers. They further document that recycling enables reuse of the container or the materials out of which they are made, resulting in some energy and natural resource savings. The studies, however, do not quantify the benefits in relation to costs of implementing a deposit system. In addition, the studies do not measure the effectiveness of deposit laws compared with other means of recycling. A complete list of the studies we consulted is presented in the bibliography. Litter Reduction When states first began to consider deposit legislation in the 197Os, one of the most often cited benefits was litter reduction, Although it receives less attention as an issue in the 1990s than it did in the 197Os, litter reduction is one of the few areas where the effects of a deposit law are documented. Studies we examined described litter as composed of from 10 percent to 20 percent beverage containers by weight and 40 percent to 60 percent by volume. As shown in table III. 1, many studies cite reductions in bev- erage container litter in deposit law states as a result of the legislation. Table 111.1:Roadside Litter Reductions in Deposit States as Cited by Prior Studies Percent reduction Percent reduction total State __. -- ..__------ --- Year beverage container litter litter Iowa 1980 78.7 (volume) 38.1 (volume) Maine 1979 56.0 (by item) _._ ~~~..__~--.._~ ~~~. 10.0,.~~~~ ~~~ (by item)~~~ ._....~_ ~.~ Michigan 1986 24.4 (by item) Cans 78.4 (by item) Bottles 51 _~ .._ _~ ,l (by .__~ item) -~.-.._ .~~.~~~-~- ..~_~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~- ~~~~ Oregon 1974 83.0 (by item) 39.0 (by item) Energy and Resource The energy and resource savings from recycling are also documented. Savings According to the Aluminum Association, the energy saved from making a can from recycled aluminum saves 95 percent of the energy that would be needed to make an aluminum can from virgin material, According to the Glass Packaging Institute, a trade association repre- senting the glass bottle manufacturing industry, for each 1 percent of recycled glass contained in a bottle, l/4 of 1 percent of the energy that would be required to produce a bottle from virgin material is conserved. For example, according to the Bureau of Mines, glass manufacturers Page 32 GAO/RCED-91-2s Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix lII Environmental Effecta find the optimum amount of recycled glass to use when making a new bottle is 26 percent. Using the Glass Packaging Institute’s index for energy savings, a bottle containing 25-percent recycled glass saves 6.25 percent of the energy that would be required to make a bottle from virgin material. Some of these savings during production are offset by the energy consumed by trucks and recycling equipment used to collect and process empty containers. Still, the studies we examined report that making beverage containers from recycled materials results in net energy savings. A 1989 report prepared for the state of Michigan con- cluded that Michigan’s deposit law resulted in an estimated energy sav- ings of 37 percent of the beer can and bottle production, container filling, and brewing processes. The amount of resource and energy sav- ings due to a deposit law would vary by state or region depending on such factors as the market shares of the different types of container, distance from distribution centers, and container redemption rate. Solid Waste Reduction In 1988 (the last year for which data are available), the United States generated approximately 180 million tons of solid waste, of which 4.1 percent was beer and soft drink containers. (See figure 111.1).EPA predicts that 80 percent of all existing landfills will fill up and close within 20 years. Finding suitable land for additional sites or disposal alternatives is increasingly expensive and a growing public concern. In light of this concern, EPA recently established a recycling goal of 25 per- cent of the municipal solid waste stream by weight. Recently, deposit laws have been seen as a way to help meet this recycling goal and reduce our dependence on landfills. Page 33 GAO/WED-91-25Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix Dl Environmental Effects Figure 111.1:Beer and Soft Drlnk Contalners as a Portion of the Municipal Solid Waste Stream (by Weight) Beer and soft drink containers Other packaging Other municipal solid waste Source: GAOwith EPAdata State recycling and deposit law officials in seven of the nine deposit law states estimate that between 72 percent and 98 percent of all beverage container are redeemed for their deposit.’ Given these redemption rates and that beverage containers comprise about 4.1 percent of the waste stream, it follows that deposit laws reduce solid waste by about 3 per- cent to 4 percent by weight.2 These figures are not significantly different than those presented in reports we reviewed that concluded that deposit laws reduced solid waste by 1 percent to 6 percent by weight and up to 8 percent by volume. Accordingly, deposit laws could play a significant role in helping the nation to meet EPA'S recycling goal. Although state recycling rates for glass, aluminum, and plastic beverage containers are not available, deposit law states appear to account for a disproportionately high percentage of the nation’s recycling of beverage containers. For example, a 1990 draft study on markets for recycled glass performed by the firm of Temple, Barker and Sloane for EPA esti- mated that deposit states, although comprising about 18 percent of the nation’s population, recycled nearly two-thirds of the glass recycled nationwide. ‘Redemption rates were not available for Delaware and Maine. “These figures may be somewhat lower because not all redeemed beverage containers are recycled. Page 34 GAO/RCED-91.25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix IU Environmental Effecta Some state officials and representatives from the plastics recycling industry claim that deposit laws have fostered recycling markets, par- ticularly plastics recycling. According to the officials, without the large, steady supply of plastic soft drink bottles, plastics recycling may never have evolved so rapidly. The Office of Technology Assessment reported in 1989 that 98 percent of the nation’s recycled plastic soft drink bottles in 1986 came from deposit states. According to a representative of Wellman Plastics, Inc., one of the largest plastics recycling firms in the nation, nearly 98 percent of the beverage container plastic the firm ’ receives comes from deposit states. Page 36 GAO/RCED-91-28 Tradeoffs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation , Appendix IV Compatibility of Curbside Recycling and * &posit Legislation Deposit systems divert valuable scrap materials and revenues away from curbside recycling programs. However, these revenues, even without deposit systems, do not fully offset curbside program operating costs. Further, officials from most deposit law states believe that deposit systems and curbside programs are compatible, and all nine deposit law states have some type of curbside or other recycling program. While a dual curbside/deposit system costs more than either program alone, the costs of a curbside program are borne primarily by municipalities, ’ whereas the costs of a deposit system are borne primarily by the bev- erage industry and its consumers. Accordingly, if both systems in combi- nation continue to divert a greater amount of waste away from landfills, as waste disposal costs increase, a dual curbside/deposit system becomes more cost-effective for municipalities. Opponents of deposit legislation claim that deposit systems hurt com- Views of Deposit prehensive curbside recycling programs by taking away revenues Legislation, Opponents needed to pay operating costs. Beverage container scrap-aluminum in and Advocates particular-provides nearly half the scrap revenue a curbside recycling program earns. Without this revenue, deposit law opponents conclude, recycling programs will be forced to obtain other funding or discontinue operation. Those who support deposit legislation state that curbside recycling is compatible with deposit systems. They say that deposit laws and curb- side programs together can reduce municipal solid waste more than either program alone. They also claim that the scrap revenue from bev- erage containers is insignificant compared with the total program costs of curbside programs. Advocates further claim that recycling centers in deposit states can redeem the beverage containers that individuals recycle through curbside programs. Finally, advocates point out that many rural areas of the United States are not likely to have curbside recycling programs. We examined three studies on the compatibility of curbside recycling Results of Available and beverage container deposit legislation. The first study was commis- Studies sioned by Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc. and prepared by Franklin Associates, Ltd. in 1989. The second study was an academic paper pub- lished in the Journal of Environmental Systems in 1986. The third study was commissioned by EPA and prepared by the Tellus Institute in 1989. These studies deal primarily with the comparative cost of these pro- grams. The studies are listed in the bibliography. Page 36 GAO/RCEDBl-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Depot& Legblatiot~ Appendix IV Compatibility of Curbside Recycling and Deposit Legislation The Franklin Associates report for Anheuser-Busch concludes that in Vermont and New York, respectively, curbside recycling and deposit leg- islation together cost 2 and 2-l/2 times more than curbside recycling alone. However, the report assumes a fairly high statewide participation rate of 80-90 percent under mandatory curbside recycling. According to the Research Triangle Institute, typical participation rates for voluntary curbside programs are in the range of 30-40 percent of households and mandatory programs’ rates are in the range of 40-90 percent. Further, the report combines both industry and municipal costs and does not explicitly state that the costs of curbside programs are borne primarily by municipalities while deposit system costs are borne primarily by the beverage industry and its consumers. In contrast, the academic paper published in the Journal of Environ- mental Systems emphasizes that the costs of deposit systems are borne primarily by the private sector, whereas curbside recycling costs are borne primarily by municipalities, Using a computer simulation model for several model communities, the study analyzed the effect of deposit legislation on municipal curbside and other recycling programs, with the net benefit to the community’s solid waste management system as “the bottom line.” Although the study acknowledged that deposit legislation reduces curbside recycling program revenues, it stated that this reduc- tion would not likely cause severe damage to municipal recycling pro- grams with adequate resource bases, Further, because a dual curbside/ deposit program would remove more materials from the waste stream than either program alone and deposit systems cost municipalities nothing, the article concluded that the two programs complement each other and should be seen as compatible tools for managing municipal solid waste. The Tellus Institute draft report for EPA similarly concluded that curb- side recycling programs can be compatible with deposit systems. Because deposit systems divert solid waste away from landfills at no cost to municipalities, overall municipal solid waste disposal costs are minimized with such a system in place. However, because a dual curb- side/deposit system diverts more waste away from landfills than either program alone, a municipality’s solid waste costs are minimized with both programs in place after landfill use fees reach a certain level. The study also concluded that a dual curbside/deposit system might be a cost-effective option even if the beverage industry’s deposit system costs are considered. However, landfill use fees would have to be signifi- cantly higher when both industry and municipal costs are considered for a dual system to be cost-effective. Page 37 GAO/RCED91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix Iv Compatibility of Curbside Recycling and Deposit Legielation All deposit states have some form of curbside or other recycling pro- Curbside Program gram in addition to beverage container deposit systems. On the basis of Costs and Benefits this experience, most of the deposit state officials we talked to believe that deposit legislation is compatible with curbside and other recycling programs. Municipalities do not calculate the costs and benefits of curbside pro- grams on a consistent basis. Collecting recyclable materials, preparing them for market, and educating the public are some of the curbside recycling programs’ costs. Diverting solid waste from landfills-which in turn extends the useful life of landfills and reduces landfill use fees- is the primary benefit of these programs. Revenue from sales of recycl- able materials is another benefit of curbside programs. However, reve- nues from recyclable materials do not fully offset operating costs. For example, a survey conducted by the National Solid Wastes Management Association indicates that total scrap revenues-from beverage con- tainers and other recyclable material--offset program operating costs by 16 percent to 40 percent. Financial data from a Rhode Island curbside program show that revenue from total beverage container scrap offsets less than 19 percent of the program’s operating expenses. Accordingly, curbside programs are not totally dependent on the revenue from scrap beverage containers. Some deposit law advocates maintain that states with curbside pro- grams can add deposit laws and increase their revenues. According to these advocates, curbside programs in a deposit state could redeem for a deposit the beverage containers that curbside participants put out for collection instead of returning for a deposit. Even if the curbside pro- gram collected fewer beverage containers than it would without a deposit system in place, each container collected would be worth the value of its ¢ deposit, which exceeds its scrap value. For example, supporters of a proposed state deposit law estimated that if 10 percent of a community’s beverage containers are recycled through a curbside program, the program could increase its revenues by about 32 percent after a deposit law is implemented if it redeemed the beverage con- tainers it collected rather than selling them as scrap. This theory will, in effect, be tested by a materials recovery facility planned to open in Connecticut, a deposit state, in 1991. According to the operator of this facility, the facility has been designed to collect bev- erage containers put out for curbside recycling and redeem them for their deposit value. Page 38 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix V Public Support for Beverage Container Deposit Legislation To assess the level of public support for deposit legislation, we designed a survey instrument and contracted with a private research firm to con- duct a nationwide telephone survey. Our survey results indicated that the vast majority of Americans support a national deposit law. Further, the majority of respondents from deposit law states approved of their states’ laws. A number of surveys conducted by others have yielded similar results. The results of our nationwide telephone survey indicate that the vast Results of GAO’s majority of Americans, in both deposit and nondeposit states, would Public Opinion Survey support a national deposit law. (The complete results of our survey, including sampling errors, are included in app. VI.) As shown in figure V. 1, about 44 percent of the public would strongly support a national deposit law and about 26 percent would somewhat support such a law. In contrast, about 11 percent of the public would strongly oppose national deposit legislation, and about 7 percent would somewhat oppose such a law. Support for a national deposit law is higher among residents in deposit states, As shown in figure V.2, over 61 percent of the residents of deposit states would strongly support a national law, and about 16 per- cent would somewhat support such legislation. In states without deposit laws, about 40 percent of the public would strongly support a national deposit law, and over 28 percent would somewhat support such a law. Page 89 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix V , Public Support for Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Figure V.l: Natlonwide Support for National Deporlt Law la Strong Strongly support A Somewhat euppolt Pmntages do not equal 100 due to rounding Figure V.2: Support for Natlonel Deposit Law lo High Among Reeldenta of Deposit State8 Neither oppose nor support Somewhat oppose Strongly support L Somewhat support Percentages do not equal 100 due to rounding As well as strongly supporting a national deposit law, residents of deposit states showed strong approval of their states’ deposit laws. As Page 40 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix V Public Support for Beverage Chtoiner Depolit Leglslatton shown in figure V.3, about 63 percent of deposit state residents strongly approve of their state’s deposit law, and about 19 percent somewhat approve of the law. Only about 6 percent strongly disapprove of their state’s deposit law, and about 3 percent somewhat disapprove of the law. Figure V.3: Approval of State Deposit Law8 Is High Among Residents of Oeposlt Stats8 8.6% F Neither approve nor disapprove 3.2% somewhat disapprove 5.6% Strongly disapprove .2% Missing Strongly approve Somewhat approve Percentagesmay not equal 100due to rounding We identified several national and state public opinion polls conducted Other Surveys Also by others. These surveys also showed support for deposit legislation. Show Support for For example, a 1989 survey conducted for a packaging trade magazine Deposit Legislation indicated that about 64 percent of the respondents living in states without deposit laws would vote for a deposit law. Another example is a 1987 survey conducted in Michigan for a conservation organization. Y That survey found that about 82 percent of the respondents strongly supported the state’s existing deposit law and about 8 percent some- what supported it. As shown in table V.l, other polls and a referendum Page 41 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation ._ ,. - .. I -. - . ” .-. . .X_ w . . . . ,- ..,- . APW* V Pub& Support for Beverage Container Deposit Legidfdon conducted after states adopted deposit legislation show support for the law. Table V.l: Public Support for State Oeposlt Laws as Clted by Prior Surveys Percent State Year approval Iowa 1979 56 Maine 19798 a4 Massachusetts 1989 78 Michigan 1987 90 Oreaon 1975 90 Vermont 1989 83 ‘%ferendum results Y Page 42 GAO/BCED-91-26 Tradeoffs ln Beverage Container Deposit Legldation Appendix VI GAO’s Public Opinion Survey Unlted States Gsmml Accounting Of&c Telephone Interview on National Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Hello. My name is . I am calling on behalf of the U.S. General Accounting Of&x. The GAO is an agency which assiststhe Senate and House of Representativesby reviewing federal programs. We have been asked to conduct a national survey on the public’s opinion of a proposed national law. 1. There has been talk about a national bottle and can deposit law, which would require people like yourself to pay a 5 cent deposit for each Boyle and can of soft drinks, beer and other such drinks you buy. You would receive your 5 cent back when you return each empty bottle or can to the store. How much (if at all) would you personally oppose or support this national law? Would you say you...(READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) % SE* I. El Strongly oppose, 9.7 2.5 2. 0 Somewhat oppose, 6.9 2.1 3. 0 Neither oppose nor support, a.7 2.4 4. 0 Somewhat support, or 26.4 3.7 S. 0 Strongly support this law if passed? 47.4 4.2 6. c] Don’t know 0.8 0.8 2. Are there any other adults over 18 years old living in your household? (Check one.) % SE 1.0 No -- SKIP TO QUESTION 3 14.5 3.0 2. cl Yes -- CONTINUE 85.4 3.0 3. Could you give me the first name of the other adults over 18 years old who lives in this household? (ENTER NAMES) I. 2. 3. . . 11. 12. * SE denotes the sampling error. Note: Figures may not equal 100 percent due to rounding. Screening questions used for sampling purposes have been deleted. Page 43 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendh VI GAO’s Public Oplnlon Survey 4. Whatdoyouthink(READEACHNAMEOFHOUSEHOLDMEMBER)might feel? Doyouthink (READ EACHNAMEOFHOUSEHOLDMEME8ER WOUICI . ..(RF!ADRBSPONSES) (Checkonejbreach)* 5. Strongly support this law if I I Pd 61.4 4.3 Pd 40.4 4.0 , 6. Mising 6. Missing 1.4 * These estimates represent the combination of the r&pondent and all other household mmbers. ** :'N" denotes the estimated number of responses in the population frm which 0~ sample was drawn. Page 44 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation hwndix VI GAO’S Public opinion Survey 5. If then wore a national law requiring a 5 cent deposit, some think that people will bring backbottles and cats of soft drinks, beer and other such drinks they buy so that they could get back their 5 cent deposit. In your opinion, how likely or unlikely is it that other p”ple will do this? Would you say it is...(READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) N=181,961,000 SE 1. 0 Very unlikely, =&- 2.3 2.0 Somewhat unlikely, 10.6 2.6 3. 0 Neither unlikely nor likely, 3.0 1.4 4. cl Somewhat likely, or 36.5 4.0 5. 0 Very likely? 40.9 4.1 6.0 Don’t know 1.0 0.8 6. How about you? How likely or unlikely is it that you would bring back bottles and cans so that you could get your 5 cent de it back? Would you say it is...(READ RESPO$SES) (Check one.) N=181, &?f, 000 SE 1. 0 Very unlikely. 8.9 2.4 2. 0 Somewhat unlikely, 3.7 1.6 3. 0 Neither unlikely nor likely, 1.0 0.8 4. q Somewhat likely, or 12.9 2.8 5. Cl Very likely? 73.4 3.7 6. 0 Missing 0.1 0.3 7. When you have empty bottles or cans of soft drinks, beer and other such drinks you buy, do you gcnerally...(READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) N=181,961,000 SE 1.0 Throw them out with other trash, & 3.8 2. 0 Separate these items from other garbage and have it picked up for recycling, 16.1 3.1 3. 0 Bring them to a local center for recycling, 24.9 3.6 4. 0 Bring them back to the store to get your deposit back, 17.6 3.2 5. Cl Give them to charity, or 6.6 2.1 6. 0 Something else? (PROBE FOR A BRIEF DESCRIPTION) 5.8 2.0 7. 0 Missing 0.1 0.3 Page 46 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Depoeit Leghlation I Appendix VI GAO’s Public Opinion Survey 8. If them were a nationd law requiring you to pay a 5 cent deposit on each bottle and can of soft drinks, beer and other such drinks you buy, would you gcnerally...(READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) (N=181,9% 000) % -.- SE 1. 0 Throw them outwith other trash, 4.9 1.8 2. 0 Separate these items from other garbage and have it picked up for recycling, 7.4 2.2 3. 0 Bring them to a local center for recycling, 7.0 2.3 4. 0 Bring them back to the store to get your deposit back, 71.0 3.8 5. Cl Olve them to charity, or 6.0 2.0 6. 0 Something else? (PROBE FOR A BRIEF DESCRIPTION) 2.6 1.3 7. 0 Don’t know 0.2 0.4 8. c] Missing 0.1 0.3 DEPOSIT STATES ONLY A. Are you aware that your state has a law requiring a depc&t for soft drinks, beer and other such drinks you buy? (Check one.) (N=33,386,000) % SE 1.clYca 94.9 2.2 2.C1No-* SKIP TO QUBS’MON 9 4.9 2.1 3. 0 Miming 0.2 0.4 B. How much have you increased or decreasedthe amount of soft drinks, beer and other such drinks you buy because of the deposit your state required you to make? Would you say you have...(READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) N=3 683,795 Lb C3rcatlyincreased. 2. 0 Somewhat increased, 6.4 2.4 3. 0 Neither increased nor decreased, 85.3 3.5 4. 0 Somewhat decreased,or 3.8 1.9 5. 0 Greatly decreasedthe amount you buy? 2.1 1.4 6. 0 Don’t know 0.5 0.7 7. 0 Missing 0.2 0.4 Y Page 46 GAO/RCED-91-26 Traded% in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix VI GAO’s Public Opinion Survey C. How much do you epprove or disapprove yarr state’s current law which requires you to make a deposit for soft drinks. bar, and other such drinks you buy? Would you sa$you...(READ RESl$SES) (Check one.) N=31,683,795 1. 0 Strongly 8pprcwe. 64.4 4.7 2. Cl Somewhat approve, 19.3 3.9 3. t] Neither approve nor disapprove, 8.2 2.1 4. 0 Somewhat disapprove, 3.4 1.8 5. 0 Strongly disapprove of your state’s law? 4.6 2.1 6. 0 Don’t know 0.1 0.3 CHECK QUESTION 2, IF NO OTHER HOUSEHOLD MEMBERS, SKIP TO QUESTION 9 D. What do you think (READ EACH NAME OF HOUSEHOLD MEMBER) might feels toward your state’s current bottle and can return deposit law? Do you think (READ EACH NAME OF HOUSEHOLD MEMBER THEN READ RESPONSES) (Chrck one for each) * Responses 1. Strongly approves 2. Somewhat approves 3. Neither approves nor disapproves 4. Somewhat disapproves, or 3.2 1.6 5. Strongly 5.6 disapproves of your St&b h current deposit law 2.1 6. Missing 0.2 l These estimates represent the combination of the respondent and all other household members. Page 47 GAO/RCED-91.25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix VI GAO’s Public Opinion Survey NONDEPOSlT STATES A. If a 5 cent &posit were required, how much would you incr& or decreasethe amount of soft drinks, beer and other such drinks you buy becauseof the deposit you would have to make? Would you expect you to...(READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) SE A- 0.3 2.0 Somewhat inctcascd, 3.2 1.8 3. 0 Neither increased nor decreased, 85.1 3.6 4. q Somewhat dcctascd, of 8.0 2.7 5. c] Oreatly decreasedthe amount you buy? 3.1 1.7 6. q ]Don’tknow 0.2 0.5 7. 0 Missing 0.3 0.0 ALL STATES 9. In the Pastyear, have you made a deposit on any soft drinks, beer or other such drinks you can buy where you would get back your deposit if you returned the bottle ot can to the store? (Check one.) (N=181,961,000) % SE 1.0 No 65.1 4.0 2.0 NOT SURE/DON’T REMEMBER 0.3 0.5 3. q Missing 0.2 0.4 4.a Yes-* 35.4 4.0 How ftequently (if at all) did you bring back your empty bottles or cans where you already had paid a &posit? @EAb RESPONSES) (Check one.j N=64,393,645 SE 1. q Always 01almost always, iTi% 4.7 2.0 Sometimes, or 6.9 3.1 3. 0 Rarely, if ever? 11.6 3.9 Finally, I’d like to ask you a few questions about yourself. 10. In what state do you live? PLEASE ENTER SEX OF RESPONDENT. [IF UNSURE, PROBE:] N=181,961,000 11. Are you male or female? (Check one.) % SE 1. 0 Male 47.8 4.2 2. 0 Female 52.0 4.2 3. 0 Missing 0.1 0.3 Y Page 48 GAO/RCED81-25 Tradeoffs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Appendix Vl GAO’s Public Opinion Survey 12. What was the high& gmdo of school you completed? (;O NOT READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) N=181,961,000 SE 1.0 No/Somchijjh school 16.1 3.1 2. 0 High school graduate/nocollege 35.8 4.0 3. 0 Some college 26.6 3.7 4. 0 College graduate 01 mote 21.0 3.4 5. 0 Missing 0.5 0.6 13. HOW old wets you on your last bitthday? years old 14. Would you say out gross income last year was... (READ RESPONSES) (Check one.) N=181,961,0 B0 SE 1. Cl UndcrS10,OOO 19"6 3.3 2. 0 &twem $10,000 and $30,000 41.8 4.1 3. 0 Between $30,000 and $SO,OOO 21.4 3.4 4. 0 OverS50,OOO 10.9 2.6 5. 0 Dont’ know 3.3 1.5 6. 0 Missing 2.9 1.4 Thank you for your rime. Your answers will be very helpfid to our review. Page 49 GAO/RCED-91-25 Trah-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legldation ., Appendix VII Major Contributors to This l3eport Peter Guerrero, Associate Director Resources, Edward Kratzer, Assistant Director Community, and Ray Smith, Assignment Manager Gregory Kosarin, Evaluator-in-Charge Economic Angela Sanders, Staff Evaluator Development Division, Mehrzad Nadji, Assistant Director for Economic Analysis Washington, DC. Alice G. Feldesman, Senior Social Science Analyst Y Page 50 GAO/WED-91-25 Tra&-offs ln Beverage Container Deposit Legidation h Bibliography Belasen, Alain T. “The New York State Returnable Beverage Container General Report’sand Law-Economic Effects, Industry Adaptations, and Guidelines for Studies of Deposit Improved Environmental Policy.” Rockefeller Institute Working Papers, Legislation No. 31 (Spring 1988). A description and economic analysis of the adap- tation of the beverage industry to New York’s deposit law. The Bottle Bill. Prepared by Public Sector Consultants for the State of Michigan, Department of Natural Resources. 1989. A summary of the environmental and economic effects of Michigan’s deposit law. Energy and Economic Impacts of Mandatory Deposits. Federal Energy Administration, Office of Energy Conservation and Environment. 1976. A study on the impacts of a national beverage container deposit law. The Fate of Used Beverage Containers in the State of New York. Pre- pared for the Aluminum Association, Inc. by Franklin Associates, Ltd. Prairie Village, Kans.: 1986. A study to examine the costs and benefits of New York’s deposit law and to determine the “ultimate fate” of the used beverage container under a deposit system. Forced Deposit Laws: There Are No Winners. National Soft Drink Asso- ciation. Washington, DC: 1989. An examination of the negative effects of deposit laws. Gehr, William. Effect of the Vermont Beverage Container Deposit System and Recommendations by the Committee. Agency of Natural Resources, Solid Waste Management Division, State of Vermont. N.D. An examination of the environmental and economic effects of Vermont’s deposit law. The Impacts of National Beverage Container Legislation. U.S. Depart- ment of Commerce, Bureau of Domestic Commerce staff study. Wash- ington, DC: 1976. An analysis of the potential effects of a national deposit law. Lesser, William and Ananth Madhavan. ‘LEconomic Impacts of a National Deposit Law: Cost Estimates and Policy Questions.” Journal of Consumer Affairs, Vol. 21, No. 1 (1987), p. 122. An analysis of the potential economic and environmental impacts of a national deposit law. Moore, W. Kent and David L. Scott. “Beverage Container Deposit Laws: A Survey of the Issues and Results.” Journal of Consumer Affairs, Vol. Page 51 GAO/WED-91-25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation l Bibliography 17, No. 1(1983), p. 67. A survey of other studies of the effects of deposit laws. The New York Returnable Beverage Container Law: The First Year. Report to the Temporary State Commission on Returnable Beverage Containers by the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government. Albany, N.Y.: 1986. A summary of the costs and benefits of New York’s deposit law 1 year after its implementation. Potential Effects of a National Mandatory Deposit on Beverage Con- tainers, (GAO/PAD78-19, Dec. 7, 1977). The U.S. General Accounting ws description of the potential economic and environmental effects of a national deposit law. Report on the Management Study to Improve the Efficiency of the New York State Returnable Container Act. Prepared for the Moreland Act Commission on the Operation and Administration of the Returnable Container Act by KPMG Peat Marwick. New York: 1990. An analysis of the operation of New York’s deposit law. Rose, Daniel. “National Beverage Container Deposit Legislation: A Cost- Benefit Analysis,” Journal of Environmental Systems, Vol. 12(l) (1982- 83), p. 71. An evaluation of the business and economic effects of deposit laws. Shireman, William K. et al. The CalPIRG-ELS Study Group Report on Can and Bottle Bills. California Public Interest Research Group and Stanford Environmental Law Society. Berkeley, Calif.: 1981. A summary and analysis of state deposit laws and their economic and environmental impacts. States’ Experience With Beverage Container Deposit Laws Shows Posi- tive Benefits. (GAO/PAD-u-08, Dec. 11, 1980). The U. S. General Accounting Office’s evaluation of the impact of a national deposit law by studying the economic and environmental effects of four state deposit laws, “Case Studies.” National Solid Wastes Management Association, Waste Solid Waste Recyclers Council, Information Packet No. 2. Washington, DC: N.D. Arti- Y cles on operating curbside recycling programs. Page 52 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Leglalation Bibliography Characterization of Municipal Solid Waste in the United States: 1990 Update. US. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response. Washington, DC: 1990. A report on the com- position of the municipal solid waste generated, recovered, and disposed of in the United States. Choices for Conservation. Resource Conservation Committee Final Report to the President and the Congress. Washington, DC: 1979. A com- prehensive analysis of different methods of conserving natural resources, including an examination of deposit legislation. Facing America’s Trash: What Next for Municipal Solid Waste? Office of Technology Assessment. Washington, DC: 1989. An examination of the United States’ solid waste problem and current and proposed solutions. Methods to Manage and Control Plastic Wastes. Report to the Congress by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, Office of Water. Washington, DC: 1990. A compre- hensive analysis of plastics in the municipal solid waste stream and ’ methods to reduce plastic waste. Beverage Container Life Cycle and Industry Trends. U. S. Department of Beverage Container the Interior, Bureau of Mines, Mineral Availability Program, Western Market Share and Field Operations Center. Spokane, Wash.: 1989. Draft report on bev- Consumption erage container costs and packaging trends. Markets for Recycled Glass. Draft prepared for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Policy Analysis, by Temple, Barker & Sloane, Inc. Lexington, Mass,: 1989. An examination of the markets and uses for recycled glass. Sales Survey of the Soft Drink Industry. National Soft Drink Associa- tion, Annual Survey. Washington, DC: 1978, 1980-1986. A review of the soft drink industry’s sales performance. Sjolander, Richard and Peter Kakela. “Michigan’s Mandatory Beverage- Container-Deposit Law: Economic Effects of a Public Policy on Industry Sales.” JPP&M, Vol. 7 (1988), p. 166. An estimate of the Michigan deposit law’s effect on beer sales. Statistical Profile of the Soft Drink Industry of the United States. National Soft Drink Association. Washington, DC: 1986. A compilation of Page 53 GAO/RCED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Bibliography soft drink industry statistics from government agencies, soft drink industry sources, and trade press publications. Ackerman, Frank and Todd Schatzki. Bottle Bills and Municipal Curbside and Other Recycling: A Preliminary Cost Analysis. A draft report to the U.S. Envi- Recycling- ronmental Protection Agency by the Tellus Institute. Boston: 1989. An analysis of deposit laws’ effects on municipal recycling programs. Clapham, W.B. “An Analysis of the Potential Effect of Beverage Container Deposit Legislation on Municipal Recycling Programs.” Journal of Environmental Systems, Vol. 14(3) (1984-85). An analysis of the costs and benefits of the combination of curbside recycling programs and deposit legislation to a municipality’s solid waste management system. Potential Impacts of a National Bottle Bill on Plastics Recycling. Pre- pared for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Policy Analysis, Water Economics Branch by Industrial Economics, Inc. Cam- bridge, Mass.: 1989. An assessment of a national deposit law’s effects on (1) reducing plastics in the municipal waste stream and (2) existing plas- tics recycling programs. Recycling in the States: Update 1989. National Solid Wastes Managment Association. Washington, DC: 1989. A summary of state recycling legislation. Rigid Container Recycling: Status and Impact on the Rigid Container Industry. U.S. Department of Commerce, International Trade Adminis- tration, Office of Metals, Minerals, and Commodities, Washington, DC: 1989. An examination of the scope and industry costs and benefits of container recycling. The Role of Beverage Containers in Recycling and Solid Waste Manage- ment: A Perspective for the 1990s. Prepared for Anheuser-Busch Com- panies, Inc. by Franklin Associates, Ltd. Prairie Village, Kans.: 1988. A comparison of the cost-effectiveness of operating a curbside recycling program with and without a deposit system in place. Rozell, David. “Bottle Bill and Curbside Recycling: The Oregon Experi- ence.” Testimony to the National Recycling Congress in Charlotte, NC., Oct. 31 to Nov, 3, 1989. Testimony by Oregon’s Hazardous and Solid Page 64 GAO/RCED9L26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Leg&&don Bibliography Waste Reduction Manager on Oregon’s experience with curbside recycling and its deposit law. Shireman, Bill. Are Bottle Bills Compatible With Curbside Recycling? A Review of the Impacts, Economics, and Politics. California Futures, Inc. Sacramento, Calif.: 1990. A comparison of solid waste reduction attribu- table to deposit laws and curbside recycling programs when operated separately and in combination. Sudol, Frank and Alvin Zach. “Newark, New Jersey Recycles.” 1989. A paper prepared by Newark’s Department of Engineering on the city’s recycling programs. Michigan Soft Drink Bottlers’ Costs Resulting From the Deposit Law. Distributor and Prepared for the Michigan Soft Drink Association by Temple, Barker & Retailer Costs Sloane. Lexington, Mass.: 1989. A summary of the costs to soft drink distributors of complying with Michigan’s deposit law. Soft Drink Bottler Costs Under the Massachusetts Bottle Bill. Prepared by Temple, Barker & Sloane, Inc. for the Massachusetts Soft Drink Asso- ciationBoston: 1988, A summary of the costs to soft drink distributors of complying with Massachusetts’ deposit law. Survey on Supermarket Container Redemption Operations. Conducted by Cresap, McCormick, and Paget for the Food Marketing Institute. Washington, DC: 1986. Summary of costs to retailers of complying with deposit laws and of redeeming refillable bottles in nondeposit states. “Highway Litter Survey.” Memo to the Iowa Department of Transporta- Environmental Effects tion, Highway Division, prepared by John H. Moody, Apr. 16, 1980. Results of a litter survey conducted on Iowa interstate highways. Jacobs, Kenneth. Roadside Litter Study. Technical paper 79-10. Pre- pared for the Maine Department of Transportation. 1979. A study to determine the Maine deposit law’s effect on roadside litter. Michigan Litter Composition Study. Michigan Department of Transpor- tation, Maintenance Division. 1986. A litter composition study to assess the Michigan deposit law’s effect on roadside litter. Page 55 GAO/WED-91-26 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation Bfbliogravhy , Waste Reduction Manager on Oregon’s experience with curbside recycling and its deposit law. Shireman, Bill. Are Bottle Bills Compatible With Curbside Recycling? A Review of the Impacts, Economics, and Politics. California Futures, Inc. Sacramento, Calif.: 1990. A comparison of solid waste reduction attribu- table to deposit laws and curbside recycling programs when operated separately and in combination. Sudol, Frank and Alvin Zach. “Newark, New Jersey Recycles.” 1989. A paper prepared by Newark’s Department of Engineering on the city’s recycling programs. Michigan Soft Drink Bottlers’ Costs Resulting From the Deposit Law. Distributor and Prepared for the Michigan Soft Drink Association by Temple, Barker & Retailer Costs Sloane. Lexington, Mass.: 1989. A summary of the costs to soft drink distributors of complying with Michigan’s deposit law. Soft Drink Bottler Costs Under the Massachusetts Bottle Bill. Prepared by Temple, Barker & Sloane, Inc. for the Massachusetts Soft Drink Asso- ciation Boston: 1988. A summary of the costs to soft drink distributors of complying with Massachusetts’ deposit law. Survey on Supermarket Container Redemption Operations. Conducted by Cresap, McCormick, and Paget for the Food Marketing Institute. Washington, DC: 1986. Summary of costs to retailers of complying with deposit laws and of redeeming refillable bottles in nondeposit states. “Highway Litter Survey.” Memo to the Iowa Department of Transporta- Environmental Effects tion, Highway Division, prepared by John H. Moody, Apr. 16, 1980. Results of a litter survey conducted on Iowa interstate highways. Jacobs, Kenneth. Roadside Litter Study. Technical paper 79-10. Pre- pared for the Maine Department of Transportation. 1979. A study to determine the Maine deposit law’s effect on roadside litter. Michigan Litter Composition Study. Michigan Department of Transpor- tation, Maintenance Division. 1986. A litter composition study to assess the Michigan deposit law’s effect on roadside litter. w@ow Page 55 GAO/~91.25 Trade-offs in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation . ----_- -... I1.S. Gwwral Awounting Office I’.( 1. 130x 60 15 (G;tit.trwsburg, MI) 20877 Ortltbrs may also be placed by calling (202) 275-6241. I.
Solid Waste: Trade-offs Involved in Beverage Container Deposit Legislation
Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1990-11-14.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)