Casella Waste Systems of Rutland, Vt. has now joined the Association. Casella is one of the nation’s largest regional waste services companies, doing business primarily in the Northeast. Casella offers services in collection, recycling and landfill disposal, and is a leader in advanced waste resource management with efforts zero sort and dual stream recycling; fiber recycling; waste to energy programs; and organics. Welcome to Casella!
The National Waste & Recycling Association’s Women’s Council has established an educational scholarship program to assist qualified students in their pursuit of an education that will lead to productive careers in the environmental industry. Through this program, now in its seventh year, 21 students have been awarded scholarships. Three scholarships in the amount of $5,000 each will be awarded for the 2014-2015 academic year.
Applications are due March 1, 2014. Visit this link to learn more.
volunteer (vɒlənˈtɪər) —n: 1. a person who voluntarily offers himself or herself for a service or undertaking.
As a relatively new employee to the National Waste & Recycling Association I have been absolutely astounded by the level of commitment the members of this association have shown for their profession. The selfless demonstration of the volunteers has been encouraging. Recently I sent out a call for volunteers and was overwhelmed by the tremendous response I received from our members. More than 15 people came forward.
The Board of Trustees commissioned the Association to develop a certification program that would create value to all things waste and recycling for the association. Since this commission our members have embraced the program with support and a sincere desire to ensure success.
As a professional who has worked with volunteers for many years, I know their volunteer jobs can almost require just as much time as their “paying” jobs. Volunteering can be a thankless job compared to the blood, sweat and commitment that goes into the work. I would just like to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU! GRACIAS! MERCI! DANKE! GRAZIE!
Anne Germain, director of waste and recycling technology for the National Waste & Recycling Association explains what the numbers on plastic mean. The numbers don’t always mean the item is recyclable (although it usually is), but instead are resin identification codes for the type of plastic the object is made of. Here are the codes on plastics and what they mean. Anne will tell you what is made out of these plastics.
Another question I hear a lot is: “Does my stuff really get recycled? I hear it all goes to the landfill.” The short answer is: YES, it does get recycled.
Here’s the longer one:
Whether the recyclables are picked at the curb commingled or whether it is taken to drop-off bins at a centralized location, the recyclables are processed and made into new products. If the material is mixed together, it gets taken to a materials recovery facility (MRF) where a combination of manual sorting, screens, magnets and optical sorters separate the materials so that they can be sent to market.
When the MRF receives the recyclables from the haulers, the material loaded onto conveyors. One of the first sorts is to remove material that is not recyclable. Sometimes this material is not even considered recyclable in the first place: they could be garden hoses or umbrellas or even used diapers. Occasionally, the material can even be dangerous, used needles that must be removed by the men and women on the sort lines. Other times, the material could be contaminated recyclables. The classic example here is a greasy pizza box. Although the cardboard can usually be recycled, the grease from the pizza contaminates the cardboard making it unrecyclable.
So, how did this material end up in the recycling bin in the first place? Well, some of it got there because people genuinely don’t know that it can’t be recycled and are trying to recycle as much as possible. Other times, they ran out of room in their trash bin and ended up using the recycling bin as their overflow. But, sometimes, zealous recyclers deliberately put the material in the recycling bin because they hope that the material will somehow make it through and still get recycled. But, ultimately, these unacceptable materials get separated at the front end and sent to the landfill.
If too much of the unacceptable materials make it past the sorters, it can wreak havoc with the MRFs equipment. That innocuous garden hose can wrap itself around equipment causing it to stop, shutting down the entire recycling process for the plant. Therefore, it’s important for the public to recognize that the unacceptable material should be managed properly, rather than simply hoping that the plant will handle it when it gets there.
The technology has changed significantly in the past 20 years allowing more material to be processed. Materials are processed in many different ways. Some facilities are beginning to take rigid plastics; others are not. Some require that paper be separated; others allow it to be mixed with containers. There is no one-size-fits-all recycling in this country. Therefore, it’s important to check with your local municipality to make sure that recycling is done right.
So, in the end – recycling: Yes it is done. But, help out your local recycler by making sure that you recycle the right stuff in the right way.
Anne Germain, the National Waste & Recycling Association’s Director of Waste and Recycling Technology, talks about what plastics you can and can’t recycle.
Representatives from the New York City Chapter of the National Waste & Recycling Association testified before the New York City Council regarding two proposed pieces of legislation that likely would add to the cost of collecting and managing waste and recyclables in the city. To learn more, click here.
We recently conducted an online education survey to understand the type of training EIA’s membership has attended and what training you expect to have access to in 2014. I want to share the results of the survey and provide information on our next steps.
The results confirmed that 78 percent of the 49 responses did attend educational sessions this year. Of those, 42 percent of the sessions attended were webinars, 33 percent were in-person at the local/regional level, and 8 percent were online. The topics of the educational sessions included safety, regulatory issues, leadership/management, engineering, and business issues (like finance and accounting). The top five educational topics the survey participants requested in 2014 include recycling/resource recovery (41 percent), regulatory (38 percent), safety (38 percent), and business issues (35 percent).
We will be providing this information to the Education Committee on November 21st along with recommendations on the best method of delivery. I want to thank everyone who took time to complete the survey and look forward to your feedback as new educational sessions are launched.
WASHINGTON — The Washington, D.C.-based trade group that represents the private-sector waste and recycling industry in the United States announced today that it is adopting a new name—the National Waste & Recycling Association. It also unveiled a new logo and tagline (“Collect. Recycle. Innovate.”). The change will officially take place on Monday, Dec. 2. The name change followed the merger of Environmental Industry Associations (EIA) and its sub-associations, the National Solid Wastes Management Association (NSWMA) and the Waste Equipment Technology Association (WASTEC).
“The rebranding is a significant milestone in achieving the goals of the strategic plan we adopted in November 2012,” said Charlie Appleby, the Chairman and CEO of Advanced Disposal and the Chairman of the Board of the National Waste & Recycling Association (the Association). “The strategic vision for the group is the creation of a merged advocacy organization with leadership, expertise and programs that promote the Association as the most effective and trusted voice on ‘all things waste and recycling.’ ” To learn more about the rebranding, click here.