A monetary incentive for recycling may be coming to Tennessee by 2020
A new bill may help litter in and around Chattanooga Creek. Channel 3 has learned about a new recycling program.
The days of turning in a bottle cap for a candy bar are long gone, but the TennCan Bottle Project for Tennessee is helping to bring that incentive back.
It's a deposit of five cents. It will be added to every bottle statewide, and it's not a tax.
"The deposit will be on the receipt, and it won't be taxed. So it's a flat 30 cents for a six pack," says Jim Watson an academic coach at IV Academy, and volunteer for the TennCan project.
Your grocery bill will be slightly higher depending on how many bottles you purchase, but those cents will be redeemable at local redemption centers. Bins will be available to be placed in front of churches, non profits, and schools. Watson says, TennCap is aiming high.
"A great number would be, if we could recycle 80 percent of the containers that are produced in Tennessee," states Watson.
There will be a limit of 10 pounds per drop off, and each bin will vary depending on the company. Even with these added redemption centers, Watson expects an uptick at local recycling centers, as there are some things not allowed.
"Wine bottles, milk jugs, newspaper," adds Watson. These items won't be accepted at the centers.
Watson hopes this gives groups like Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and Youth groups an incentive for projects.
"You know, the whole point is to get it off the streets," says Watson.
There are perks for bottle companies as well. Watson says the amount of energy to produce one bottle is five times less with a recyclable.
The TennCan organizers aim to develop 500 redemption centers, bringing in around $169,000 annually. The Tennessee Bottle Bill Project will be proposed in early 2019. Organizers hope it will go into effect by 2020.
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