Judge Deborah Batts unblocked the passage of the expanded New York State bottle bill back in August saying companies must comply with its requirements by 22 October unless they could demonstrate that compliance would be impossible.
The International Bottled Water Association, Nestle Waters North America and Polar Corp had challenged the environmental bill in May alleging that the bill just amounted to another tax that would do nothing to aid recycling.
“Deposit systems are inefficient and ineffective, and do little to help the environment as they target such a small part of the waste stream,” said the International Bottled Water Association. “Bottle bills are not the answer to addressing solid waste issues. Rather, they are simply another tax on consumers.”
Now the expanded bottle bill, which previously covered just sodas and beer, is to come into force on 31 October after Judge Deborah Batts signed a ruling late on Friday.
New York State Governor David Paterson praised the ruling, describing the bigger bill as “one of the most effective environmental laws in our State’s history.”
Paterson said the expansion of the legislation will deliver much-needed revenue for the state and help keep neighborhoods and parks clean.
Adding 5 cent (nickel) deposit to sales of bottled water is not the only addition to the legislation.
Among the other provisions in the update of the 1982 bill is the requirement for beverage companies to return 80 per cent of unclaimed bottled water to the state. Previously, distributors and bottlers had kept all of the funds from unclaimed deposits.
Companies must also increase the fees they pay redemption centers to take empty bottles, from 2 cents to 3.5 cents per container.