The recent "As You Sow" recycling scorecard flunked many beverage companies, many of which have made some green efforts, but still produce staggering amounts of waste:
It's a common theme in As You Sow's 2008 report on beverage container recycling in the U.S.: companies are making big strides in some areas, yet they all have a lot of room for improvement.
Non-profit As You Sow last surveyed U.S. beverage companies in 2006, developing a report that spurred Nestle Waters to become the first major beverage producer to support legislation that would increase recycling rates. And just in October it became the first to support an industry-wide goal to recycle 60 percent of plastic bottles by 2018.
"Historically the beverage industry has lobbied against beverage container legislation," said Amy Galland, As You Sow's research director and the report's author.
Lloyd Alter blogged a few months ago here on the Huffington Post about bottle deposits (and other deposits), a seemingly-forgotten way for companies to keep things cleaner and greener. He also wrote about shifting responsibility for waste back to producers rather than consumers:
In Canada, 97% of beer bottles are returned to the beer stores and refilled. In France, a wine bottle gets reused about eight times. A strong deposit and return system gets ingrained in the culture as easily as putting it in the blue box. So why not put a deposit on everything?
People say they are so concerned about the mercury in compact fluorescent bulbs getting into the landfills. So put a 25 cent deposit on them and have people bring them back. People do have to replace them so what is the hassle?