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S. 716 (103rd): Vegetable Ink Printing Act of 1994

The text of the bill below is as of Nov 19, 1993 (Passed the Senate).

S 716 ES


1st Session

S. 716


To require that all Federal lithographic printing be performed using ink made from vegetable oil and materials derived from other renewable resources, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,


    This Act may be cited as the ‘Vegetable Ink Printing Act of 1993’.


    The Congress finds that--

      (1) more than 95 percent of Federal printing involving documents or publications is performed using lithographic inks;

      (2) various types of oil, including petroleum and vegetable oil, are used in lithographic ink;

      (3) increasing the amount of vegetable oil used in a lithographic ink would--

        (A) help reduce the Nation’s use of nonrenewable energy resources;

        (B) result in the use of products that are less damaging to the environment;

        (C) result in a reduction of volatile organic compound emissions; and

        (D) increase the use of renewable agricultural products.

      (4) the technology exists to use vegetable oil in lithographic ink and, in some applications, to use lithographic ink that uses no petroleum distillates in the liquid portion of the ink;

      (5) some lithographic inks have contained vegetable oils for many years; other lithographic inks have more recently begun to use vegetable oil;

      (6) according to the Government Printing Office, using vegetable-based ink appears to add little if any additional cost to Government printing;

      (7) use of vegetable-based ink in Federal Government printing should further develop--

        (A) the commercial viability of vegetable-based ink, which could result in demand, for domestic use alone, for 2,500,000,000 pounds of vegetable crops or 500,000,000 pounds of vegetable oil; and

        (B) a product that could help the United States retain or enlarge its share of the world market for vegetable ink.


    (a) DEFINITION- In this section, ‘Federal agency’ means--

      (1) an executive department, military department, Government corporation, Government-controlled corporation, or other establishment in the executive branch of the Government (including the Executive Office of the President), or any independent regulatory agency; and

      (2) an establishment or component of the legislative or judicial branch of the Government.


      (1) IN GENERAL- Notwithstanding any other law, beginning on the date that is 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, all lithographic printing performed or procured by a Federal agency that uses oil in its ink shall use the maximum amount of vegetable oil and materials derived from other renewable resources that are technologically feasible and result in printing costs that are cost-competitive with printing using petroleum-based inks.

      (2) MINIMUM PERCENTAGES- Except as provided in paragraph (3), in no event shall a Federal agency use any ink that contains less than the following percentages of vegetable oil in its ink used for lithographic printing:

        (A) In the case of news inks, 40 percent.

        (B) In the case of sheet-fed inks, 20 percent.

        (C) In the case of forms inks, 20 percent.

        (D) In the case of heat-set inks, 10 percent.

      (3) SUSPENSION OF EFFECTIVENESS OF PARAGRAPH (2)- (A) At any time at which a Federal agency determines that the cost of printing with vegetable-based ink is significantly greater than the cost of printing with petroleum-based ink, the Federal agency may perform or procure lithographic printing using ink that contains less than the percentages of vegetable oil in its ink than those specified in paragraph (2) until such time as the cost of printing with vegetable-based ink is not significantly greater than the cost of printing with petroleum-based ink.

      (B) A determination made under subparagraph (A) shall be reviewed--

        (i) at least once every quarter, for the performance or procurement of printing of materials that are printed on a regular basis; and

        (ii) prior to performing or procuring the printing of particular material of significant size that is printed once or is printed at intervals of 6 months or more.

Passed the Senate November 19 (legislative day, November 2), 1993.



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