PLASTICS Responds to Break Free Act

March 25, 2021
plastics engineers examining machine

The Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS) announced its strong opposition to the Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act, introduced today in the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate. 

“This legislation would be absolutely devastating to manufacturing jobs and America’s overall economy just as we begin to rebound from the effects of COVID-19,” said PLASTICS President & CEO Tony Radoszewski. “This bill is a direct threat to the nearly one million men and women who work in the domestic plastics industry. Additionally, this misguided legislation could have the unintended consequence of leading to an increase in greenhouse gas emissions.” 

“The Break Free From Plastics Pollution Act poses serious danger to America’s economy, particularly the manufacturing sector,” said PLASTICS Chief Economist Perc Paneda, PhD. “It puts the over $7.0 billion capital expenditure spending in plastics material and resin manufacturing in serious jeopardy. Importantly, for every dollar spent in manufacturing another $2.74 is added to the economy.” 

The plastics industry is one of America’s largest and is critical to the overall performance of America’s economy. Most plastics are used in manufacturing, although the use of plastics in services, such as healthcare, is becoming increasingly important. The “Break Free Act” would destroy manufacturing jobs and put America’s supply chains into chaos.  

The “Break Free” Act targets plastic for use in a variety of applications, which would incentivize the production of less energy-efficient materials, such as glass, tin, aluminum, and paper. Life-cycle analysis indicates that compared to these older materials, plastics result in lower greenhouse gas emissions. 

PLASTICS will continue to support commonsense, bipartisan legislation to incentivize sustainability through recycling. Measures like the RECOVER Act to improve recycling infrastructure and other efforts like the RECYCLE Act – reintroduced in Congress this week – and the Save Our Seas 2.0 Act provide better approaches than those offered in the “Break Free” Act.