Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)/Product Stewardship (PS)
EPR is one the most serious issue confronting manufacturers of many types of products at the state level. It is an issue the carpet industry is very concerned about. There are two types of EPR legislation that we have seen. Framework legislation, which casts a wide net over products and leaves it up to the regulatory sector to determine product to be regulated. This type of legislation has become less prevalent. The other type of EPR legislation is product specific, such as AB 2398 in CA, the Carpet Stewardship Legislation. In 2010 Maine passed the first piece of framework PS legislation, LD 1631 and in the same year, California passed AB2398. The 2015 legislative sessions have ended or are winding down. During the 2015 session, no states considered framework legislation. States that considered carpet-specific bills during the 2015 legislative session include Illinois and New York. In Illinois the introduction of legislation (which did not move in the Senate) resulted in the formation of a carpet stakeholders recycling group. The work of this group is ongoing. New York remains in session to resolve issues other than that of carpet stewardship.
Refers to using cleaning methods with “environmentally-friendly” ingredients and chemicals to preserve human health and environmental quality. Does not take into consideration the effects the product has on the item being cleaned (colorfastness, efficacy, etc.). Not all cleaning products clean equally well. CRI tested an assortment of carpet cleaning solutions and equipment and found a wide variance in how well these products work — and discovered that some even damage carpet. The CRI Seal of Approval program identifies effective carpet cleaning solutions and equipment that clean carpet right the first time and protect a facility’s carpet investment.
The manufacturing industry is at a significant disadvantage in the global marketplace. The corporate tax rate in America is the second highest among developed nations and soon to be the highest. U.S. manufacturers face higher tax costs than almost all of our competitors in other countries. Lowering the tax rate would provide for manufacturers with more resources to expand operations and create jobs through increase availability of resources and by making US long-term planning and investments. Tax cuts are proven ways to improve competitiveness and generate growth.
Energy is a major feedstock in the production of carpet. In order to provide the predictability needed America must have a comprehensive energy policy that insure full access to our total domestic energy supply. It is through affordable and reliable energy that we will be able to insure the long-term health of the U.S. economy and the prosperity of American workers. Manufacturers support an energy strategy that embraces all forms of domestic energy production while expanding existing conservation and efficiency efforts. Oil, natural gas, nuclear and clean coal remain essential contributors to America’s energy security.
Regulations That Inhibit Manufacturing
At a time when the U.S. economy is struggling, policymakers should look very carefully at any new government programs that would expand environmental rules or impose entirely new regulatory regimes. The US EPA’s approach to the coal fly ash issue is a good example of over regulation becoming particularly burdensome to industry. We have been proactive on a variety of environmental issues and sustainability practices. The carpet industry is (and has been) doing our part to improve the environment. We are constantly striving to lessen our environmental footprint, to develop new technologies and promote energy efficiency. We reduce waste and recycle materials. We focus on sustainable production practices. U.S. manufacturing is the leader in creating innovative solutions to advance renewable and alternative energy and greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) reduction technology.