California is poised to take a big step beyond plastic.

On May 22, two bills to reduce single-use plastic and packaging waste by 75 percent over the next decade passed in both the state Senate and the Assembly. This is good news for California, where recycling rates have been trending in the wrong direction since 2012. Californians now throw away 2,200 pounds of trash per person every year, roughly the weight of a subcompact car.

"Nothing we use for a few minutes should pollute our planet and threaten our health for hundreds of years," said Emily Rusch, executive director of CALPIRG. "Once these bills become law, the real work can begin to get California's plastic recycling rates up to 75 percent as quickly as possible."

CALPIRG worked with dozens of environmental, health and business organizations to build support for the bills, SB 54 and AB 1080, and now we urge Gov. Gavin Newsom to make signing them a priority.

Read Emily's blog here.

Photo Caption: While California's recycling rate remains above the national average, it's been trending in the wrong direction since 2012. Credit: Helen89 via Shutterstock