New Jersey Assemblyman Proposes Legislation Fines Retailers For Shipping Small Items In Boxes More Than Twice Their Size – CBS New York
MONTCLAIR, NJ (CBS New York) — Many of us have done a lot more shopping online since the pandemic began, and some have noticed that these boxes are getting bigger and bigger, even though the items ordered are the same size.
As CBS2’s Nick Caloway reports, a New Jersey lawmaker says enough is enough.
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We have all been there. You order a small item online and for some reason it appears in a huge box.
“It’s just wasteful,” said Montclair resident Jane Nevin.
It’s a waste of cardboard and packing materials inside, and it drives some people crazy.
“So useless. It bothers me,” said Lakewood resident Karen Plaskow.
For example, John McKeon ordered a small “baby on board” magnet from Bed Bath & Beyond to celebrate the birth of his first grandchild.
“Could have fit in the palm of your hand and been in an envelope. Instead, it was in a box probably 25 times bigger. Not to mention all the packing material that comes with it. But what a waste,” he said.
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McKeon isn’t just a new grandfather; he is a member of the New Jersey assembly and has served on the environment committee for two decades.
So the Essex County Democrat is proposing new legislation that would fine large retailers or big-box stores for shipping items in boxes that are more than double the size, in a bid to reduce waste in the e-commerce industry, which has surged since the start of the pandemic.
“Just a common-sense bill on its own should be enough to save tons and tons and tons of cardboard and reduce our carbon footprint,” McKeon said.
Bed Bath & Beyond did not respond to CBS2’s request for comment, but some major retailers are already trying to reduce shipping waste.
Amazon has recently sent smaller items in smaller boxes or envelopes. The company claims to have reduced the weight of outbound packaging by more than 36% over the past seven years.
McKeon expects some pushback from online retailers, but hopes other lawmakers will enact and pass the bill by this summer.
If passed, large online retailers could be fined $250 to $500 for each violation.
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CBS2’s Nick Caloway contributed to this report.