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Lawmakers should follow lead of cities, towns on reducing waste


Janelle Nanos’s “Low waste for consumers, high hopes for entrepreneurs” (Page A1, Aug. 13) should be required reading for Massachusetts legislators, who could be seizing their own opportunities to help us reduce waste in our state.

For example, lawmakers could update the bottle bill — the successful container deposit law — so that we can more easily and effectively recycle and reuse more beverage containers. They could follow the lead of more than 100 cities and towns in the Commonwealth and ban single-use plastic grocery bags, instead of overriding these local bans (as a committee in the Legislature recently recommended).


They could ban polystyrene foam cups and take-out containers at restaurants (what most people think of as Styrofoam), a step we should have taken years ago, and one that two-dozen cities and towns now have taken.

They could pass right-to-repair legislation to make it easier for us to repair our phones and other products, so that we don’t have to buy (and throw away) so many new ones.

On a planet with finite resources, we have a surplus of ideas on how to live our lives in ways that waste less and keep our air, water, and other resources clean. Our lawmakers should embrace these ideas, and follow the lead of the people of Massachusetts who are ready to reduce, repair, reuse, and recycle our way out of the waste crisis.

Janet S. Domenitz

Executive director

Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group

and MassPIRG Education Fund