Product Stewardship and Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR)
Paint Stewardship Program
California is the second state in the nation to enact an industry-led, statewide program to reduce the generation of leftover paint, promote its reuse, and properly manage unwanted leftover paint. This program follows producer responsibility principles to ensure that leftover paint is properly managed in a manner that is sustainably funded and provides jobs to Californians. This page provides information on the paint stewardship law (Chapter 420, Statutes of 2010 [Huffman, AB 1343]) and its implementation.
- Key Elements of the Law
- Stewardship Plans
- Paint Stewardship Program
- Buying Paint
Introduction to California’s Paint Stewardship Law
Californians generate millions of gallons of leftover paint each year. Prior to the passage of AB 1343, the only way for residents to properly manage their leftover paint was through local, taxpayer-funded household hazardous waste (HHW) programs. However, due to the immense cost to manage household hazardous waste, local programs typically can only afford to serve between 5-10 percent of the residents in their jurisdictions. Despite these low levels of participation, in 2009 paint represented almost one-third of the material collected through local HHW programs and cost local government millions of dollars to manage.
Efforts continue to reduce the amount of leftover paint generated and to reuse leftover paint, and any remaining unwanted leftover latex paint should be recycled. The GS-43 Green Seal© environmental certification standard assures the quality and performance of recycled latex paint.
Key Elements of the Law
Chapter 420, Statutes of 2010 (Huffman, AB 1343) sets forth the requirements of the statewide Paint Stewardship Program. Below are basic descriptions.
The purpose of the Paint Stewardship Program is to reduce the generation of postconsumer architectural paint, promote the reuse of post-consumer architectural paint, and manage the end-of-life of post-consumer architectural paint, in an environmentally sound fashion, including collection, transportation, processing, and disposal.
- “Architectural paint” means interior and exterior architectural coatings, sold in containers of five gallons or less for commercial or homeowner use, but does not include aerosol spray paint or architectural coatings purchased for industrial or original equipment manufacturer use.
- “Manufacturer” means a manufacturer of architectural paint.
- “Department” means the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle).
See the law (PDF, 91 KB) for more definitions.
In very basic terms, manufacturers (either individually or through a stewardship organization), design their own stewardship program. They prepare and implement a plan to reach certain goals and report to CalRecycle on their progress. CalRecycle approves plans, checks progress, and provides oversight and enforcement to ensure a level playing field among paint manufacturers. Other service providers, such as HHW management contractors, local HHW programs, and/or retailers, participate in the program as negotiated through the manufacturer or stewardship organization.
The stewardship plan defines how a manufacturer or stewardship organization intends to fulfill its responsibilities under the law and communicates a course of action to stakeholders and the public. Plans will be posted at this website, along with ensuing annual reports which document a program’s progress. Plans must include the following information:
- Demonstrate sufficient funding for the program, including a funding mechanism for securing and dispersing funds to cover administrative, operational, and capital costs, including the assessments of charges on architectural paint sold by manufacturers in this state.
- Coordination of the program with existing local HHW collection programs.
- Goals established by the manufacturer or stewardship organization to achieve the purpose, including recovery and recycling of post-consumer paint, as practical, based on current HHW program information.
- Education and outreach efforts.
- Paint Stewardship Program
A unique and very important aspect of the paint stewardship law is that it requires sustainable funding. Paint manufacturers are required to demonstrate sufficient funding for the program via an architectural paint stewardship assessment that must be approved by CalRecycle as part of the plan approval process. The architectural paint stewardship assessment for each container of architectural paint sold by manufacturers in the state will be remitted to a stewardship organization, if applicable. That assessment will be added to the cost of all architectural paint sold to California retailers and distributors, and, in turn, each of those retailers and distributors must add the assessment to the purchase price of all architectural paint sold in the state. The amount of the assessment shall be sufficient to meet, but not exceed, the cost of carrying out the plan. Any surplus funds must be put back into the program to reduce the costs of the program, including the assessment amount.
Enforcement and Compliance
Maintaining a level playing field among manufacturers is addressed through a combination of civil penalties for non-compliance and transparency that allows all stakeholders and the public to evaluate progress. For manufacturers to be in compliance, they must develop and implement a CalRecycle-approved stewardship plan, submit annual reports on the progress of their program, and submit an administrative fee to CalRecycle to cover the cost of services to administer and enforce this law.
Annual reports will be posted at the CalRecycle website. These reports shall include information on volume of paint sold, postconsumer paint recovered, the methods used to collect, transport, and process postconsumer paint, the total program cost, an evaluation of the funding mechanism, an independent financial audit, and examples of educational materials provided to consumers.
|April 1, 2012||Submit Plan: The manufacturer or designated stewardship organization shall submit an architectural paint stewardship plan to CalRecycle.|
|July 1, 2012 (on or before)||Approve Plan: CalRecycle has 90 days to approve plans.|
|July 1, 2012 (or three months after a plan is approved)||Implement Plan: The manufacturer or designated stewardship organization shall implement the approved plan.|
|July 1, 2012 (or upon the date the first plan is approved, with 6-month updates thereafter)||List of Manufacturers: CalRecycle shall post on its website a list of manufacturers for which the department has an approved plan.|
|April 1, 2013 (6-month updates)||Notice Compliant Manufacturers: CalRecycle shall post on its website a list of manufacturers compliant with the required annual reporting.|
|September 1, 2013 (annually thereafter)||Submit annual report: The manufacturer submits a report to CalRecycle individually or through a stewardship organization.|
|120 days after notice of compliant manufacturers (July 29 is 120 days after April 1)||Sales prohibition for non-compliant manufacturers: Sales prohibition shall be effective on the 120th day after the notice is posted on the CalRecycle web-site.|
|Within 90 days of receipt (September 28 is 90 days from July 1)||Review and adopt finding on annual report: CalRecycle shall review the annual report and adopt a finding of compliance or noncompliance within 90 days of receipt of the report.|
PaintCare is the only stewardship organization that has submitted a plan to CalRecycle to-date. Program information includes the following topics added as they become available:
Stewardship Plans (Submitted)
- Revised California Architectural Paint Stewardship Program Plan (PDF, 6.8 MB) (submitted June 4, 2012), and PaintCare's cover letter which includes CalRecycle's review comments on the April 2, 2012 Plan (PDF, 330 KB) and PaintCare's responses. Also see PaintCare's website
- Comments received by
CalRecycle on PaintCare's June 4, 2012 California Paint
- City of Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation (PDF, 136 KB)
- Los Angeles County Solid Waste Management Task Force (PDF, 55 KB)
- Comments received by CalRecycle on PaintCare's April
2, 2012 California Paint
Stewardship Program Plan:
- California Product Stewardship Council (PDF, 171 KB)
- Californians Against Waste (PDF, 279 KB)
- City of Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation (PDF, 132 KB)
- Los Angeles County Solid Waste Management Committee/Integrated Waste Management Task Force (PDF, 186 KB)
- Rural Counties Environmental Services Joint Powers Authority (PDF, 312 KB)
Pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), CalRecycle prepared the following documents concerning PaintCare's Architectural Paint Stewardship Program Plan submitted on June 4, 2012. Comments are due by July 14, 2012, as noted in the Notice of Intent.
- Negative Declaration and Initial Study Evaluating the Adoption of the Architectural Paint Stewardship Program Plan (PDF, 1.2 MB)
- Notice of Intent to Adopt a Negative Declaration Pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (Notice) (PDF, 400 KB)
List of Compliant Manufacturers
The paint stewardship law requires CalRecycle to post a list of architectural paint manufacturers for which the Department has approved a plan by July 1, 2012 or upon the date the first plan is approved [Public Resources Code Section 48702 (c)(1)]. The purpose of posting this list is to allow architectural paint wholesalers and retailers to determine if the sale of a manufacturer's architectural paint is in compliance with the law. This list will be updated no less than once every six months.
CalRecycle approved PaintCare's Architectural Paint Stewardship Program Plan on July 19, 2012.
See PaintCare’s website to learn how to register as a participating architectural paint manufacturer with the PaintCare program.
- List of architectural paint manufacturers operating under the CalRecycle-approved PaintCare stewardship plan (PDF 217 KB)
List of Compliant Brands
Sometimes architectural paint that is made by one manufacturer is sold under a variety of brands. In order to assist architectural paint wholesalers and retailers determine if the sale of a particular brand of architectural paint is in compliance with the paint stewardship law, CalRecycle will post a list of architectural paint brands that are covered under an approved stewardship plan. This list will be updated no less than once every six months.
- List of architectural paint brands covered under the CalRecycle-approved PaintCare stewardship plan (PDF 327 KB)
It is suggested that retailers check this list regularly as manufacturers/brands may be added or removed from this list. Sale of paint which is non-compliant is a violation and may result in penalties of up to $10,000 per day.”
CalRecycle must use a rulemaking process to establish procedures such as:
- Stewardship plan approval criteria
- A process for CalRecycle to accept payment for its services related to oversight and enforcement activities
- The establishment of penalty ranges that reflect a progressive enforcement approach
- Criteria for acceptance of annual reports.
More information on the rulemaking process can be found on CalRecycle’s website for proposed rulemaking on Paint Stewardship.
Buying Environmentally Preferable Paint
The Department of General Services' Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Best Practices Manual has a chapter on purchasing paint that describes its benefits, availability, performance, and more.
The Public Contract Code (PCC) section 12203 et seq. requires state agencies (including California State Universities) to ensure that at least 50 percent of the dollars spent on paint be spent on recycled paint with a recycled content consisting of at least 50 percent post-consumer paint. Recycled paint is available on a state contract. The paint on contract meets performance standards of virgin paint established by the Master Painters Institute. Furthermore, it costs significantly less than virgin paint. Visit the state list of contracts (search under classifications for 312115 and then look for “Paint, Recycled Latex”) to obtain information on the current paint contracts.
Subscribe to the CalRecycle Paint Product Stewardship listserv to receive periodic e-mail updates specific to CalRecycle-related implementation activities.