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Free market solution to plastic pollution

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All across Texas, from the Gulf Coast to the Panhandle, from Piney Woods to Permian Basin, communities are working to build a better tomorrow.

We have a free market solution that’s voluntary, cleans up Texas, and keeps our fish and wildlife safe while putting money in the pockets of Texans.

The best thing is it doesn’t raise taxes.


The goal of Texans for Clean Water is to organize a statewide group of business leaders, industries, and NGOs through a common initiative to prevent and remove waterborne litter. Restoring the viability of our waterways improves neighborhoods, brings recreational opportunities to our communities, and encourages economic growth.

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Plastic Waste in Texas By-The-Numbers

50% LESS

in the 10 states with recycling rebate programs



Texas cities, from Laredo to Lufkin, spend tax dollars in excess of 

$50 Million

on litter and illegal dumping each year



When Texas' four largest population centers will start to run out of landfill space




participation rates in other states with the rebate program



Take Action

Inform Your Public Officials

Our local and state officials need to hear your stories about how litter is affecting your lives. (Click here to find who represents you). Ask them to support our innovative rebate program that provides a free market solution to our litter problem.

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We need help spreading our message and our mission. What's the situation look like in your community? Snap a picture and share it with us!  Do you have Facebook? Twitter? Instagram? Snapchat? Whatever it is, click here for our latest post on Facebook and share it with your friends!​

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Stay informed as policy moves through the process.  We may need your help to spread the message, endorse the program, and even walk the halls of the Capitol in Austin. 

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Additional Research & Information

■  Plastic to Work Initiative - Burns & McDonnell report, Texans for Clean Water engaged a third-party engineering firm to evaluate an innovative approach to address litter, create jobs, and rebuild communities by increasing the recovery and recycling of plastics in Texas. 1/2018

 Cost of Litter and Illegal Dumping -  Burns & McDonnell report titled The Cost of Litter and Illegal Dumping in Texas: A Study of Nine Cities Across the State​. 2/20/2017

 Port NOLA Trash Free Waters (TFW) Pilot Project - In collaboration with U.S. EPA, port tenants, and community stakeholders, Port NOLA is working to address the universal issue of trash, litter, and debris and preventing it from reaching our waterways. 11/3/2015

 Stemming the Tide - Ocean Conservancy's 2015 report on a way forward to eliminate ocean plastic. Ocean Conservancy worked with the McKinsey Center for Business & Environment to lead a comprehensive study, Stemming the Tide supported by Alliance members, The Coca-Cola Company, the Dow Chemical Company, the American Chemistry Council, World Wildlife Fund, and the Recycling and Economic Development Initiative of South Africa (REDISA). 

 Texas Legislators' Interim Charge on Litter Study - The Senate Committee on Agriculture, Water & Rural Affairs received an interim charge to "Study and make recommendations on the effects of windblown and waterborne litter. The study should include an analysis of the economic effects of litter, any necessary methods to prevent and remediate litter, and an assessment of state and local programs to reduce litter." Link to be updated as information becomes available. 10/8/2015

■  Data in the Heart of Texas - Resource Recycling reports a recent study indicates significant recycling opportunities exist in the Lone Star State, and the numbers have grabbed the attention of state legislators. 9/1/15

 Conserve, Renew, Restore - Framework for Implementing the RESTORE Act on the Texas Gulf Coast. 8/2015

 What's in Our Trash? - City of Austin, Waste Characterization Study 2015

 Texas Recycling Data Initiative (TRDI) Report - State Of Texas Alliance of Recyclers report (TX rate 18.9%)

 2013 Texas Litter Survey - TxDOT Don't Mess with Texas Visible Litter Study Full Report

 Adopt-A-Beach Fall Cleanup Results - General Land Office Fall 2014 Location Report 

 Adopt-A-Beach Fall Cleanup Top 10 Results - General Land Office Fall 2014 Items Report 

 Bottled Water and Energy Fact Sheet - The growing consumption of bottled water raises questions about the product’s economic and environmental costs. Among the most significant concerns are the resources required to produce plastic bottles and to deliver filled bottles to consumers, including both energy and water. 2/2007

■  Plastics Facts & Statistics - Container Recycling Institute

■  Laws on Illegal Dumping - TIDRC's 0verview of Texas Health & Safety Code Chapter 365

 United Nations Report - Plastic Waste Causes Financial Damage of US$13 Billion to Marine Ecosystems Each Year as Concern Grows over Microplastics. 6/23/2014 

 2021 TCEQ Municipal Solid Waste in Texas: A Year in Review - 2021 data summary and analysis of waste generation and landfill capacity.

 Keep America Beautiful 2020 National Litter Report - Findings include 50 billion pieces of litter, 152 pieces for every person in America and more than 75% of public support for rebate/deposit systems.

 2020 Eunomia 50-States-of-Recycling - recycling rates for common container and packaging materials across all 50 US states–Texas ranks 42nd. 

 2019 TxDOT Litter Survey -  Most litter comes from people's vehicles and at least 25% is recyclable. Cleaning up roadways cost the state approximately $50 million per year.

 City of Dallas Cost of Litter and Illegal Dumping report -  Dallas spends a significant annual sum, approximately $20.4 million on
preventing, combatting, and cleaning up litter and illegal dumping. (2018)

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