According to a release on July 16, the National Association of Counties has adopted the first national policy supporting a "framework" approach to Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR).
Extended Producer Responsibility is a concept whereby product manufacturers are primarily responsible for the life cycle impacts of their products. The "framework" concept goes beyond product-by-product approach and establishes consistent principles and procedures for product makers in order to achieve producer-lead responsibility for sustainable product design and management.
"NACo's resolution signals the beginning of the end of local governments providing "free" disposal services to producers of toxic and throw-away products," says Bill Sheehan, executive director of the Product Policy Institute.
In January 2008, the California Integrated Waste Management Board was the first state agency in the United States to adopt a framework for an Extended Producer Responsibility system. With EPR implementation legislation expected to be considered in California and several other states, and now with the first national association of elected officials supporting the EPR Framework, the effort toward achieving sustainable production gains significant momentum.
Both the California Product Stewardship Council (CPSC) and the Product Policy Institute are dedicated to reversing the trend of manufacturers producing more disposable and toxic products. This groundbreaking resolution exemplifies a trend of growing support and momentum toward sustainable production.
The National Association of Counties adopted the resolution in support of an EPR Framework approach at their annual meeting in Kansas City, Missouri.