Senate Committee Approves Energy Bill

August 1, 2015

For Immediate Release:

The Paper Recycling Coalition (PRC) is pleased to report that on July 30th the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources approved an energy bill which protects paper recycling when the Department of Energy awards loans and grants to developing energy technology.

Terese Colling, President of the PRC noted: “Once again, with Senator Stabenow’s leadership, Congress has made itself clear that the federal government will not subsidize the destruction of recycled fiber. Congress eliminated commonly recycled paper as a feedstock from the production tax credit and in the energy bill they have reiterated the priority placed on recycling paper rather than turning it into an energy source.”

The Paper Recycling Coalition (PRC), which represents the 100% recycled paperboard and containerboard industry, supported the Stabenow amendment to the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPACT) because of increasing concerns about the quality of the paper fiber being provided by material recovery facilities (MRFs) co-located with Waste-to-Energy (WTE) facilities.

The PRC lauds the tireless efforts of Senator Stabenow on this issue and her intent to continue to seek resolution on the issue of recyclables being mixed with municipal waste, thereby destroying the ability of materials such as paper, to be recycled. In the Committee markup, Senator Stabenow said the following:

“Recycled paper has been typically separated from other waste, however, a new waste collection method has emerged that mixes garbage and recycled items together and what we are seeing is old food, medical waste, and diapers and all kinds of trash that gets commingled with what would be recyclable products. Under my original amendment, facilities that burn commonly recycled paper, which has not been segregated at collection, would no longer be eligible for loan guarantees. While the modification (of my amendment) does not cover facilities that are commingling recycled paper in other waste, I do hope this is a step forward, and I hope we will continue to work on it.”

The PRC appreciates the willingness of Chairman Murkowski and Ranking Member Cantwell to continue to work on this issue.