The Evolution of Eco-Modulation to Drive Eco-Design

Reid Lifset of the Yale School of the Environment and one of EPR's earliest proponents in the U.S., recently published a study on the challenges of eco-modulation in EPR programs. Early EPR programs were believed to incentivize eco-design in packaging; however, it is hard to determine if they have successfully achieved noticeable change.

One of the main barriers in determining the success of eco-modulated fees brought up in the study was the lack of credible data to inform the effectiveness of EPR laws in incentivizing design change: just tracking recycling rates doesn't provide a full picture, as recycling rates can be affected by a myriad of factors. Lifset offers various potential solutions to combat ineffective eco-modulated fees, including collecting data needed to conduct an effective evaluation, evaluating the strength of penalties and bonuses, and more. Read more in Resource Recycling.