Since 1976 Michiganders have been paying a 10 cent deposit on all bottles and cans that have carbonated drinks in them.  Those drinks include pop, beer, wine (although they are not carbonated), wine coolers, canned cocktails and mineral water.

How many of those bottles we pay a deposit on in Michigan actually are returned for their deposit, 97% of them.  Also something you may not know and that is 75% of the 3% of bottles Michiganders paid in deposits but did not redeem to receive their 10 cents back goes to a state environmental cleanup fund and the other 25% is returned to the stores who sell the products.

A bill was just introduced into our state house which would include water and juice bottles, but exclude milk products.  State Representative Jon Hoadley, D-Kalamazoo has introduced HB 5486.  HB 5486 would “expand beverage containers subject to bottle deposits to include all nonalcoholic carbonated or uncarbonated beverages except for soy, rice or dairy-derived products.”

State Representative Jon Hoadley was quoted in a Detroit Free Press article stating:

We need to increase our recycling rate in the state of Michigan. We're falling behind…If we're capturing more bottles, we're keeping more things out of our landfills and more trash off the road. And recycling saves energy… The governor said he wants to do more recycling and we want this to be something that he can lift up…We know the bottle law works.

Is it time that we put this deposit on water bottles, we see an awful lot of them thrown on our streets and property?  Also how many of these plastic bottles are not being recycled.

Problem being is it is going to add another $2.40 to $4.00 dollars to the cost of cases of water.  Also can you image how long it could take to actually redeem your returnable bottles, today there are times I wait an awful long time for access to those redemption machines because we have people at those machines with garbage bags and shopping crates full of cans and bottles.