VPIRG’s Plastic Agenda

June 12, 2019

By John McClaughry

The plastic bag ban is sitting on Gov. Phil Scott’s desk. If he signs it, Statehouse Chronicle writer Guy Page reportsa working group created by the bill will set to work to select the next targets on the State of Vermont’s War on Plastic, a subset of the perpetually fruitless War Against Climate Change.

Chief lobbyist Paul Burns of the Vermont Public Interest Research Group – VPIRG – tells us that “The law creates a working group to look at where we go next.” That would be bans on “disposable plastic food service ware, like plates, cups and utensils; plastic film, and single-use ‘printed materials’ including even ‘telephone books’, and also possibly covering store sale flyers.

The VPIRG bill suggests that the working group should consider a policy of “extended producer responsibility” for a producer of a product to “provide for and finance the collection, transportation, reuse, recycling, processing, and final management of the product.” The group should consider “a financial incentive for manufacturers, distributors, or brand owners of single-use products to minimize the environmental impacts of the products in Vermont. The environmental impacts considered shall include review of the effect on climate change of the production, use, transport, and recovery of single-use products.”

I’m no particular champion of plastic bags – BUT this is one more foolish VPIRG nanny state scheme to fight the supposed Menace of Climate Change. Governor Scott should put an end to it.

John McClaughry is vice president of the Ethan Allen Institute

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