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The National Recycling Refund

In February 2023, NSAC hosted a Recycling Refund Webinar, which included panelists representing the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Can Manufacturers Institute, U.S. PIRG, Container Recycling Institute, National Recycling Coalition, Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), Atlantic Packaging, Blue Triton, the Association of Plastic Recyclers, and more to share the merits of a national recycling refund. NSAC staff traveled to Washington D.C. in March 2023 to present on Deposit Return Systems (DRS) (also known as Recycling Refunds or Bottle Bills) at the WWF’s Plastic Policy Summit.

NSAC staff were then joined by advocates to “Walk the Halls” and meet with Congressional offices regarding a national Recycling Refund. NSAC staff continue to work with legislators and stakeholders to align on the contents of a national bill for introduction.


On September 28, 2023, the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a hearing titled, “Examining Solutions to Address Beverage Container Waste.”

In May 2023, Heidi Sanborn attended the Ocean Plastic Leadership Network’s (OPLN) recycling refund study trip to Oregon and British Columbia.


A national container deposit return program would create a system for the public to recycle their containers at stores, return centers, and reverse vending machine locations. This system reduces litter, creates jobs, increases the availability of recycled materials, and reduces impacts on the environment with proven policy. Saving resources saves money and protects natural spaces.

  • 75% of Americans support a bottle bill deposit program where they live but only 24% of Americans live in a state with a bottle deposit program. This legislation will fill the gap and cut litter in half in our country

  • Fact sheet about why the US needs a national bottle bill and bottle deposit program

  • Bottle bill language - coming soon!

  • Widespread support for the US bottle bill comes from the business community, the public, and government officials.


On 9/28/23, the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a hearing titled, Examining Solutions to Address Beverage Container Waste.

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Walk the Halls

A day of advocacy and action where we #WalkTheHalls of Capitol Hill and met with Senators in support of a national recycling refund!

The National Stewardship Action Council (NSAC) facilitated a Walk the Halls advocacy day that brought together organizations from across the country to advocate for the introduction of a national recycling refund bill!


The day was a success, with organizations sharing their stories and meeting with Senators from both political parties and independents and gaining insights into what their key issues are regarding this policy.


This event was a powerful display of collaboration between a broad stakeholder group that agrees that it is time to introduce and debate a national recycling refund.

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