Recycling leftover paint is easier in Minnesota thanks to a program that allows painting contractors and households to drop off leftover cans of latex and oil paint at more than 100 retail drop-off sites throughout the state.
The program will add an additional 60 locations by summer 2015.
Gov. Mark Dayton signed the paint industry’s product stewardship initiative into law in May 2013.
The nonprofit Product Stewardship Institute, in partnership with the paint industry, led the national dialogue that laid the foundation for the PaintCare program, which began in Minnesota this month.
The collected paint will be recycled, properly disposed of or made available for reuse by PaintCare, a nonprofit that develops and implements paint stewardship programs for the paint industry in the US.
As of Nov. 1, retailers began adding a nominal fee to the price of house paint, stain and varnish sold in Minnesota. The fee varies by container size: 35 cents for pints and quarts, 75 cents for one gallon and $1.60 for larger containers up to five gallons. The fee will fund the program’s costs of paint collection, transportation, recycling, retailer training, and public education and promotion in Minnesota.
Minnesota is the sixth state to adopt the initiative. PaintCare also operates programs in California, Connecticut, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont. PaintCare is planning programs to begin next summer in Maine and Colorado.
In another example of product stewardship, pharmaceutical manufacturers in San Francisco are now required to dispose of unused post-consumer medicine as the city and county of San Francisco last month became the third municipality in the US to introduce extended producer responsibility legislation for pharmaceuticals.