The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Oregon Revives Nation's First Statewide Refillable Bottle Program
Glass bottles used to have value. For instance, Coca-Cola famously operated a returnable glass bottle program for 80 years until its last refillable bottling plant in Minnesota closed its doors in 2012. These days, glass bottles are recycled or—more often than not—tossed in the trash.
But in Oregon, the returnable glass bottle is making an important comeback as the state's craft breweries strive to green their footprint.
The Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative (OBRC) has launched the nation's first statewide refillable bottle system. Seven Oregon breweries, Double Mountain, Widmer Brothers, Buoy Beer, Gigantic, Good Life, Rock Bottom and Wild Ride, have joined the program and are bottling some of their beers in new, durable glass bottles that can be cleaned, refilled and reused.
These bottles are stamped with the word "refillable," "BottleDrop and "Please Return" on the glass and can be reused between 40 to 50 times, the Portland Tribune reported. The bottles are made of recycled glass at the Owens-Illinois Glass Plant near Portland International Airport.
Once consumed, the bottles can be simply returned to the same single-use bottle redemption centers in the state, where they are later separated out for reuse.
"If you've been redeeming your bottles before using the green bag account program or returning them to the bottle drop at the grocery store, you can still do that exact same thing, and we'll pick it out and we'll reuse it," Jules Bailey, OBRC's chief stewardship officer and director of external relations, told the Portland Tribune.
Since the program is so new, the bottles are currently sent to a bottle-cleaning facility in Montana, according to Oregon Public Broadcasting. However, there are plans to open another such a facility in Portland by 2020.
Joel Schoening, another OBRC spokesperson, noted that even with the additional travel to Montana, the refill program is still better for the environment than recycling single-use glass bottles.
"Every time that bottle gets reused, you're cutting the carbon footprint of that bottle in half," Schoening told Oregon Public Broadcasting. "It's the most sustainable choice in the beer aisle."
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Derrick Z. Jackson
As much as hurricanes Katrina and Maria upended African American and Latinx families, the landfall of the coronavirus brings a gale of another order. This Category 5 of infectious disease packs the power to level communities already battered from environmental, economic, and health injustice. If response and relief efforts fail to adequately factor in existing disparities, the current pandemic threatens a knockout punch to the American Dream.
'We Need People's Bailout, Not Polluters' Bailout': Climate Groups Move to Preempt Big Oil Giveaway Amid Pandemic
By Andrea Germanos
A coalition of climate organizations strongly criticized President Donald Trump's in-person Friday meeting with the chief executives of some of the biggest fossil fuel companies in the world, saying the industry that fueled climate disaster must not be allowed to profiteer from government giveaways by getting bailout funds or preferred treatment during the coronavirus pandemic.
An Important Note
No supplement, diet, or lifestyle modification — aside from social distancing and practicing proper hygiene — can protect you from developing COVID-19.
The strategies outlined below may boost your immune health, but they don't protect specifically against COVID-19.
By Zak Smith
It is pretty amazing that in this moment when the COVID-19 outbreak has much of the country holed up in their homes binging Netflix, the most watched show in America over the last few weeks has been focused on wildlife trade — which scientists believe is the source of the COVID-19 pandemic. Make no mistake: Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness is about wildlife trade and other aspects of wildlife exploitation, just as surely as the appearance of Ebola, SARS, MERS, avian flu and probably COVID-19 in humans is a result of wildlife exploitation. As a conservationist, this is one of the things I've been thinking about while watching Tiger King. Here are five more:
By Hector Chapa
With the coronavirus pandemic quickly spreading, U.S. health officials have changed their advice on face masks and now recommend people wear cloth masks in public areas where social distancing can be difficult, such as grocery stores.
But can these masks be effective?