- In order to prevent recycling fraud in California, officials have announced daily limits on the amount of cans and bottles that can be redeemed at recycling centers.
- The new limits are expected to reduce the amount of aluminum and plastic from 500 to 100 pounds, and glass will go from 2,500 to 1,000 pounds.
- The state reports that between $40 and $200 million in fraudulent payouts have been made annually, exhausting the $1.1 billion recycling fund, which paid out $100 million more in expenses than it brought in.
California charges customers a deposit when a bottled beverage is purchased. Emptied containers can then be returned to a recycling center to be exchanged for cash- 5 cents for bottles and cans, while larger containers can be redeemed for 10 cents.
Fraud exists in many forms: it is estimated that on a monthly basis, 3,500 trucks from other states arrive in California filled with containers, collecting payment although never having initially paid the deposit fee at the point of purchase. Some recyclers were also cashing in on the unlimited redemptions by claiming the same container more than once.