LANSING – Senator Rebekah Warren (D – Ann Arbor) today announced the introduction of legislation that would expand the Michigan Beverage Containers Initiated Law of 1976, commonly known as the Bottle Bill or Bottle Deposit Law. The bill would expand the 10 cent deposit and return on bottles to include water and most other bottled beverages.
“The Bottle Deposit Law has been one of the most successful advances in environmental protection in our state in recent years,” said Senator Warren. “With an estimated rate of return of more than 95% on bottles currently covered under the legislation, expansion to cover water, juice and energy drinks would amount to unprecedented environmental benefits in this state, where our natural resources are so cherished.”
When Michigan’s bottle deposit law was first implemented in 1978 to reduce roadside litter, clean up the environment, and conserve energy and natural resources, the beverage containers included in the law were beer, soft drinks, carbonated and mineral waters. In 1988, the law was amended to also include wine coolers and canned cocktails.
The Bottle Deposit Law has been extremely successful with an estimated return rate averaging more than 95% over the last sixteen years. With the boom in the consumption of bottled water and juice in recent years and the resulting litter and landfill space being taken up by those products, the next logical step is to update Michigan’s beverage container law to further reduce litter and waste.