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Is There a Climate Benefit to Reducing Packaging Materials?

Philip Rossetti of R Street breaks down the climate benefit to reducing packaging materials.

The C3 Take

Packaging materials have received scorn from environmentalists lately, but this scorn is misguided. While these materials are carbon-emitting, they are crucial for reducing food waste—a larger carbon emitter than packaging materials. Instead of attacking packaging, we should look to adopt better recycling practices and policies.

“From an emissions perspective, incremental improvements to recycling rates may yield bigger gains than attempts to cut consumption, and some materials have a bigger recycling benefit than others. Either way, though, the meat of domestic climate policy will continue to lie in the power, industry and transportation sectors. And, for environmental conservation, Americans should take note that the biggest challenges globally lie outside their borders. Better recycling policy should be pursued simply because there is an environmental and economic benefit at stake, but it does not absolve policymakers from pursuing the much bigger and more impactful policies affecting climate and global habitat preservation.”

Read the full article here.

The views and opinions expressed are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of C3.

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