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Updated: 21 min 20 sec ago

GreenWaste Recovery uses BHS equipment for system upgrade

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 09:31
GreenWaste included five Max-AI units in its system upgrade. GreenWaste Recovery, a privately owned and locally operated recycling and diversion company that specializes in collecting and processing residential and commercial waste, yard trimmings, curbside recyclables, food waste and construction and demolition (C&D) debris, commissioned a 40 ton per hour mixed waste material recovery facility (MRF) in May 2007. That system was awarded the Solid Waste Association’s (SWANA’s) 2008 Gold Award for Recycling Excellence.

More than 10 years later, GreenWaste is ready to expand and selected Bulk Handling Systems (BHS), Eugene, Oregon, to provide a mixed waste processing system. The new two-line system is designed to double overall throughput capacity to more than 80 tons per hour and includes updated technology, including five Max-AI autonomous quality control (ACQ) units. 

Three SpydIR optical sorters from Nashville, Tennessee-based National Recovery Technology (NRT) and four Max-AI AQC units work together to create a completely autonomous container line. A Max unit with dual robotic sorters operates on the last-chance residue line to recover plastics, metals and paper. BHS Tri-Disc screens will replace a trommel screen. Also included in the new system are BHS bag breakers, single drum separators from Amsterdam, The Netherlands-based Nihot, BHS polishing screens and a NRT FiberPure optical sorter that targets fiber or plastic film.
“Our MRF in San Jose is one of the most innovative processing facilities in the world, capable of sorting and recovering 98 percent of recyclable materials and 75 percent of trash for a total facility diversion rate of 88 percent for household and commercial waste,” says GreenWaste CEO Frank Weigel. “For more than a decade our exceptional team has pushed our existing equipment to operate beyond its designed throughput rates. Adding capacity and new NRT and Max technology will really boost our performance. The new technology is exciting for our team and our stakeholders; we’ll be able to increase our diversion rates while adding the necessary capacity to accept more material.” 

“GreenWaste has been an exceptional partner to BHS throughout the years,” says BHS Managing Director of Max-AI Rich Reardon. “From their expert maintenance and operations staff to their forward-thinking executive team, the organization has and continues to write the book of industry best practices. In 2008, GreenWaste was the first MRF in the country to embrace modern mixed waste processing. Today they are on the leading edge of autonomous sorting. We look forward to delivering a Max solution and the next chapter of excellence.” ]]>

San Diego adds polystyrene food containers to residential recycling program

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 08:43
article in the San Diego Union-Tribune, the containers will be accepted with curbside recyclables beginning July 1, after a unanimous vote by City Council.

The cost of the program for the city is estimated at $90,000 per year, which will come out of the $3.3 million in annual revenue the city receives from residential recycling.

The article notes, many other California cities have banned the use of polystyrene and the California Legislature considered a statewide ban in 2011 because it does not biodegrade like organic material and turns into small pieces that can be ingested by wildlife.

The move is considered a more business-friendly approach by allowing the containers, which restaurants and other businesses consider highly cost-effective, to be placed in blue recycling bins, the article states.
Restaurants and food trucks often say bans on the material are costly to their businesses because paper products are more expensive and less effective, according to the Union-Tribune article.

San Diego considered recycling the containers last fall but at that time, initial cost estimates from the city’s recycling constrictor were nearly $300,000. A new plan to send the material to a secondary processor cut the cost of the program down to $90,000

Single-family residents already have the ability to recycle polystyrene packaging material used in shipping packages. As for multifamily residents, it is unclear whether they will have the same opportunity, according to the article, since they are handled by private contractors.

The city says the adoption of polystyrene food and beverage container recycling will help it get closer to achieving its zero-waste plan, which calls for a 75 percent diversion rate by 2020, a 90 percent diversion rate by 2035 and 100 percent diversion by 2040, the article notes.


US Chamber of Commerce hosts circular economy summit

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 07:05
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation Corporate Citizenship Center, Washington, will host the 2017 Sustainability and Circular Economy Summit, as well as a half-day Resiliency Forum June 26-28 in Washington.

The three-day summit is designed to gather public and private sector leaders and explore solutions that businesses can implement to implement a circular economy. Leaders from across sectors and industries will share best practices for waste reduction.

On the sidelines of the summit, the Corporate Citizenship Center will also host a forum, “Promoting Resilience and Cross-Sector Collaboration for a Sustainable Future,” June 26. The forum is designed to be a comprehensive look at the factors that impact a community’s ability to prepare and respond to disasters, and where the private sector can engage to support adaptability. More information on the forum is available here.

Speakers at the event include Marc DeCourcey, senior vice president, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation; Tamara Barker, chief sustainability officer, UPS; Tom Szaky, CEO, TerraCycle Inc.; Hugh Welsh, president and general counsel, DSM North America; Leon Wijnands, global head of sustainability, ING Group; and Matanya Horowitz, founder, AMP Robotics. A full agenda, including a list of speakers, is available here.]]>

Kernic Systems appoints US sales director

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 02:44
Burlington, Ontario-based Kernic Systems Inc. has announced that Bob Koch has joined the company as sales director for the U.S. market.

Kernic Systems is global designer, integrator and installer of complete systems, including air conveying and dust collection systems, baling and shredding systems, recycling equipment and industrial vacuums.

Koch brings 15 years’ experience in recycling machinery sales, including a full range of baling presses, shredders, material recovery facility (MRF) sort lines and supporting equipment, most recently working with Ohio Baler Co.

“I have known Bob for several years, competing against him and working with him on joint projects,” says John Jurk, vice president of Kernic Systems. “His skill and professional approach complement those we have built Kernic’s growth on. Bob also brings a specialized skill set in the used equipment business. We’re thrilled to welcome him to our company.”

Kernic Systems says Koch will begin by focusing on the Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania markets. As he develops his experience with Kernic’s systems and capabilities, his territory will expand.

He will be supported by the company’s engineering department, installation team and service group.

“Kernic has been in a steady growth pattern,” Koch says. “I look forward to contributing to and accelerating that in the months and years ahead.”

Koch, who is based in Ohio, can be contacted directly at 440-263-6187 or at  


CarbonLITE names 7-year-old honorary employee

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 02:20
Los Angeles-based CarbonLITE, which processes 2 billion polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles annually at its bottle-to-bottle recycling plant in Riverside, California, has “hired” 7-year-old Ryan Hickman as an honorary employee, complete with his own employee badge, shirt and hard hat.

Hickman runs Ryan’s Recycling Co., which is based in Orange County, California, which to date has recycled approximately 232,000 bottles and cans, earning about $15,000. He lives in San Juan Capistrano, California, and also sells his company T-shirts online and donates all of the profits to the Pacific Marine Mammal Center, Laguna Beach, California, which has amounted to nearly $4,700 as of late June 2017.

Hickman received an orientation tour of the 220,000-square-foot facility, which claims to be the nation’s largest manufacturer of postconsumer food-contact-grade PET resin.

Hickman is pictured with CarbonLITE's Vice President of Operations Jeffrey Walsh. “Ryan is an exceptional young man committed to making a difference in protecting our planet—and, who knows, maybe he will be the CEO of CarbonLITE one day,” CarbonLITE Chairman and CEO Leon Farahnik says.


He adds that recycling is the only responsible option for plastic bottles and containers.

CarbonLITE notes that for every pound of recycled PET flake used, energy consumption is reduced by 84 percent and greenhouse gas emissions are reduced by 71 percent, according to industry data; recycling 1 ton of PET containers saves 7.4 cubic yards of landfill space; and since its Riverside, California, plant opened in 2012, CarbonLITE has reduced carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 75,000 tons and avoided using 370,000 cubic yards of landfill space.

According to, in 2012 at the age of 3, Hickman joined his dad on a trip to the local recycling center to cash in a few small bags of cans and bottles. The day after going to the recycling center, Hickman told his parents that he wanted to give plastic bags to all the neighbors and ask them to save their recyclables for him. Today, he has customers all over Orange County and spends time every week sorting cans and bottles from his customers to take to the recycle center.

Hickman has been featured on hundreds of websites, radio stations and television programs, including CNN, CNBC, PBS, FOX News, Huffington Post, Voice of America, Al Jazeera, USA Today, "Good Morning America" and ABC "World News," and has received awards from The Daughters of the American Revolution and the San Juan Capistrano City Council and mayor, according to his website.


Constellium releases annual business and sustainability report

Tue, 06/20/2017 - 02:10
Constellium N.V., headquartered in Amsterdam, has released its “2016 Annual Business and Sustainability Performance Report,” evaluating its performance against its 2020 targets.

“At Constellium, we’re committed to integrating sustainability into the very heart of our business, where our efforts create value for our customers, our shareholders, our employees and the communities we proudly serve,” says Arnaud Jouron, chairman of Constellium’s Sustainability Council and president of Constellium’s Packaging and Automotive Rolled Products business unit.

Most of its sustainability objectives are on track, according to the company:

Increase the beverage can recycling rate. Constellium says it has endorsed industry-led objectives and Europe is on track to reach the 80 percent recycling rate target set for 2020. However, the U.S. beverage can recycling rate decreased in 2016, but the company says it will continue to work with the industry and other stakeholders to address this issue. At Constellium, we have significantly increased our used beverage can recycling capacity in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, with the installation of a new furnace.

Increase customer satisfaction. Constellium says its 2016 customer survey showed continued satisfaction from its customers. The company says it continues to offer lighter, safer and infinitely recyclable solutions to our customers.

Engage employees. The company’s 2016 survey showed a 2 percent improvement versus our last survey in 2014, with a stable participation rate.

Strengthen communities. More than half of its plants organized a community program in 2016, with Constellium saying its U.S. sites particularly were active.

Build a standard for aluminum. Constellium has participated in finalizing the Aluminum Stewardship Initiative (ASI) certification program, which will be available in early 2018.

Ensure sustainable purchasing. Throughout 2016, the company says it continued to evaluate the sustainability performance of key suppliers as planned.

According to Constellium some of its sustainability objectives need improvement and the company is implementing corrective actions to address them with the objective of getting back on track by the end of 2017:

Further improve safety. Constellium says it saw a degradation in its 2016 recordable case rate. However, the company says its safety results remain among the best in the industry and it was able to contain the number of serious injuries within its maximum limit.

Reduce production waste sent to landfill. As it focused on better measuring production waste, Constellium says it identified unreported waste streams. This, combined with some nonrecurrent landfilled waste, led to an increase in the total waste produced in 2016 as compared with 2015.

Improve energy efficiency. Constellium says it remains below its target largely because of the temporary effects of ramp-ups and operational changes.

More information about Constellium’s sustainability progress and its 2016 business and sustainability report are available at


EY names Accent president and CEO Entrepreneur of the Year in the Gulf Coast

Tue, 06/20/2017 - 01:51
EY, a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services, has announced that Bill Sims, president and CEO of Accent, has been named Entrepreneur of the Year for 2017 in Gulf Coast area. He was selected by a panel of independent judges during a three-phase process of interviews and analysis.  

Entrepreneur of the Year, founded by EY, is an awards program for entrepreneurs. Winners are chosen by an independent panel of judges, including entrepreneurs and leaders from business, finance and the local community. Entrepreneur of the Year recognizes entrepreneurs through regional, national and global awards programs in more than 145 cities in more than 60 countries.

“I’m honored to accept this award representing Accent and all of our employees,” Sims says. “A company’s success is about the people, not the person. Accent has always been an entrepreneurial and innovative company. Our sales, service and engineering talent and experience is unsurpassed in our industry. Accent’s focus continues to be on our customers and bringing innovative solutions to the market.”

Accent is a global leader in supplying baling wire, wire-tying machinery and service and other bale packaging solutions to the recycling and waste industry and is a major supplier of building materials for residential and commercial construction. Founded in 1987, Accent is based in Houston.


Graham Waste Services acquires Thompson Waste Removal

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 07:48
Graham Waste Services, Brockton, Massachusetts, a family-owned and operated trash and recycling services provider, announced the acquisition of the weekly residential trash and recycling pick-up business Thompson Waste Removal of Hanson, Massachusetts. The new addition will grow Graham Waste Service’s weekly residential trash and recycling pick-up business, as well as add new commercial customers.  

Graham Waste Services has a strong presence throughout the South Shore, and with the acquisition will expand that presence in several communities including Cohasset, Hingham, Hull, Scituate, Marshfield, Kingston, Hanson, Hanover, Carver, Plymouth, Plympton, Raynham, Taunton, Easton, Norton, Middleboro, Bridgewater, West Bridgewater, East Bridgewater, Halifax, and Holbrook.

“This is an exciting opportunity to expand our footprint throughout our service area communities, and to establish a new presence in others,” says Lynne Schwandt, owner of Graham Waste Services. “Offering prompt, reliable and convenient service to customers is what we pride ourselves on, and we look forward to earning the trust of our newest customers.”

The business transaction included Thompson Waste Removal’s residential and commercial trash pick-up customers as well as equipment. Financial terms were not disclosed. Thompson will continue to operate other sectors of its business separately.

Graham Waste Services is a locally rooted, family owned and operated that has amassed more than 40 years of specialized experience and industry knowledge. Graham has locations in Cohasset, Brockton, Newton, Sandwich, Rockland, Abington and Everett, Massachusetts with storage yards throughout the Eastern Massachusetts region.

In addition to residential and commercial pick-up services, Graham Waste Services offers roll-off dumpster rentals, storage containers and portable toilet services, largely to the construction and commercial waste sectors.

Thompson Waste Removal was founded in 2001 and is a family-owned and operated business that proudly serves the South Shore of Massachusetts. Thompson will continue to operate other sectors of its business.

La Farga and Danieli sign agreement

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 05:35
Pictured above, seated: Alessandro Trivillin, co-CEO of Danieli, and Oriol Guixà, CEO and president of La Farga 

La Farga, the Spanish copper recycling company, says it has signed an agreement with the Italian company Danieli, which specializes in manufacturing equipment and plants for the ferrous metals industry. The agreement is designed to bolster the sale of La Farga’s technology and leadership in the field of copper and its alloys.

May 31, 2017, La Farga signed the agreement with Danieli to reinforce one of its strategic initiatives—the sale of its technology. To date La Farga has transferred its technology and knowledge to more than 30 plants worldwide, the company says.

The agreement allows both companies to strengthen their competitiveness and their global positioning, La Farga says.

Inka Guixà, La Farga managing director, says, “With the signing of this agreement, La Farga will offer a new service in the copper plant market, transferring its know-how, its technological process and its experience at the hands of a highly trained team with extensive experience worldwide.”

The company, headed by Oriol Guixà, says it will accompany its new clients in this line of business in implementing its technology and launching onto the market.

“By signing this agreement, the copper market has acquired a new reliable partner: Danieli & Co Officine Meccaniche Spa, together with La Farga. Two companies with full knowledge of technology, the world’s copper and the refining process,” Danieli says.

The agreement comes as Danieli is expanding into nonferrous metals processing and allows the company to take advantage of La Farga’s knowledge to adapt its technological offering to working with copper.



Waste Connections files suit against Rubicon and former employee

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 04:56
Waste Connections, The Woodlands, Texas, and its subsidiary Progressive Waste Solutions of LA (PWS) have submitted an Original Complaint, Emergency Application for Temporary Restraining Order and Interlocutory Injunction against Atlanta-based Rubicon Global LLC and Jonathan Dewitt, a former PWS district sales manager.

According to the complaint, Dewitt downloaded at least 1,160 confidential documents amounting to about 4,800 pages onto two USB devices, which included pricing information, bid proformas, customer lists and information on Waste Connections cultural training and development programs.

The complaint alleges Dewitt “abruptly resigned from PWS (March 24, 2017) to accept the position of national sales manager for Rubicon. The complaint claims Rubicon is “interfering with Waste Connections’ contracts and customer relationships and seeks to convert Waste Connections’ customers to Rubicon Services through unlawful means.”

The complaint continues, “Unless defendants are immediately restrained and enjoined from using and/or disclosing plaintiffs’ trade secrets, plaintiffs will be imminently and irreparably harmed.”

Dewitt, was also allegedly provided a letter the day of his resignation from PWS reminding him of his ongoing contractual obligations including prohibition against use of the plaintiffs’ confidential information and trade secrets and demanding he return any and all data of the plantiffs in his possession.

A letter also was allegedly provided to Rubicon advising the firm of Dewitt’s ongoing contractual and legal obligations.

Four counts are indicated in the complaint:

  • Count One: Breach of Contract (Dewitt)
  • Count Two: Violation of the Georgia Trade Secrets Act (Dewitt and Rubicon)
  • Count Three: Tortious Interference with an Existing Contract (Rubicon); and
  • Count Four: Request for Temporary Restraining Order and Interlocutory Injunction (Dewitt and Rubicon)

Rubicon Global issued the following statement to Waste Today: "While we do not comment on pending litigation, we will continue to vigorously defend the allegations in court. Like so many of our team members, Jonathan wants to be a part of the evolution of our industry—a process built on a combination of industry expertise, new technology and data analytics. It's unfortunate, but not surprising, to see Waste Connections trying to stand in the way of this progress. We are in a battle for the future of the industry and this is likely just another part of its response."

A link to the full complaint complaint filed in Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia, can be found here.


BASF boosts precious metals recycling capabilities

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 03:41
An operator at the Seneca, South Carolina, site recycles precious metals from a scrapped catalytic converter. The site serves as BASF’s global production hub for the recycling of end-of-life automotive and chemical catalysts, allowing for the recovery and recycling of the precious metals contained inside. 


BASF Corp., headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey, has completed the installation and startup
of new high-performance equipment at its Seneca, South Carolina, precious metals recycling operation. The company says the expansion will more than double the plant’s production capacity.

The Seneca site serves as BASF’s global production hub for recycling end-of-life automotive and chemical catalysts, allowing for the recovery and recycling of platinum group metals (PGMs.)

“Our investment in this high-performance equipment allows us to increase precious metals recycling at the Seneca site to meet growing market demand,” says David Freidinger, BASF vice president, precious metals recycling and refining. “This also supports our strategy to offer superior quality in our recycling services.”

Automotive catalytic converters are one of the largest industrial applications for PGMs, accounting for more than half of the world’s annual mining output, the company says. When a catalytic converter is scrapped, BASF says the precious metals contained inside can be recycled, creating a sustainable secondary supply source for such limited global resources.

BASF is a global manufacturer of precious metal products that are used in a variety of industrial applications, including automotive catalytic converters. 

BASF Corp. is the North American affiliate of BASF SE, Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF has more than
17,500 employees in North America, and had sales of $16.2 billion in 2016.


FMCSA proposes two CDL requirement changes

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 03:13
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) in Washington announced two proposals designed to take steps toward responding to a national shortage of qualified truck and bus drivers through simplifying obtaining a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and reducing administrative expenses to both the driver applicant and state driver licensing agencies.

"Taken together, these two proposals will help ease the entry for thousands of qualified individuals into career opportunities as professional truck and bus drivers—a critical occupation facing an acute labor shortage in our country,” says FMCSA Deputy Administrator Daphne Jefferson. “We could eliminate unnecessary burdens to both the applicants and to the states, save time, reduce costs and, most importantly, ensure that states only issue commercial driver’s licenses to well-trained, highly qualified individuals."

FMCSA is seeking public comment on the following two notices of proposed rulemakings (NPRM):

Military licensing and state CDL reciprocity—This proposed rule would allow state driver licensing agencies to waive the CDL knowledge test for qualified veterans and active duty personnel, including National Guard and Reserves, seeking to obtain a civilian CDL. This waiver is designed to simplify processing and reduce costs for states and for qualified individuals. Since 2012, FMCSA has allowed states to waive the CDL skill test requirement for qualified veterans and active duty personnel. More than 18,800 individuals have transitioned from their military service into the U.S. civilian jobs as commercial truck and bus drivers under the waiver opportunity.

“We owe so much to our men and women who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces," says Jefferson. "This action would be one more way we can express our gratitude and assist those with a military CDL who wish to utilize their extensive training and experience operating heavy trucks and buses into careers as civilians."

Commercial learner’s permit validity—This proposed rule would allow states to issue a CDL learner’s permit with an expiration date of up to one year, replacing the current six-month limitation. This extra flexibility is designed to eliminate paperwork requirements by the states. It is also designed to eliminate retesting and additional fees presently incurred by individuals who seek an additional 180-day renewal of their CDL learner’s permit.

"At the core of both proposals is safety of the motoring public," says Jefferson.  "We will continue to demand that commercial truck and bus drivers and their employers adhere to the safety standards that exist to protect all drivers."

The public comment period for both proposals will remain open for 60 days following their formal publication in the Federal Register.


MassDEP publishes report on Massachusetts C&D market

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 03:02

The Brattleboro, Vermont-based Northeast Recycling Council (NERC) and DSM Environmental Services (DSM), Windsor, Vermont, have contracted with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) to evaluate the current and future status of construction and demolition (C&D) debris management in Massachusetts, as well as to identify and recommend potential opportunities for the diversion of a greater proportion of recyclable materials to recycling markets.

The final report, Massachusetts Construction & Demolition Debris Market Study, has been published and can be accessed here. The project commenced in July 2016 with the field work undertaken between September and December 2016.

NERC provided administrative functions for the project and DSM carried out the field work, analysis and report writing tasks.

MassDEP has established a goal of diverting 50 percent of C&D materials from disposal, but in recent years the actual diversion rate has plateaued at around 30 percent. The primary objective of the analysis undertaken by DSM was to first assess incoming and outgoing materials at Massachusetts C&D processors and handling facilities, and to determine what the opportunities and constraints are to increase materials diversion beyond 30 percent.

In its conclusion of the report, DSM Environmental says, "Processors in Massachusetts are doing a relatively good job of recovering materials from mixed C&D waste – currently recovering roughly 50 percent of marketable materials, resulting in a 32 percent recycling rate for C&D waste managed in Massachusetts."

NERC is a multistate nonprofit organization that says it is committed to environmental and economic sustainability through responsible solid waste management. Its programs emphasize source reduction, reuse, recycling, composting, environmentally preferable purchasing and decreasing the toxicity of the solid waste stream in the 11-state region comprising Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont.

DSM Environmental is a small, specialized environmental consulting firm working globally to advance recycling, materials management and solid waste management strategies.


ERI earns NAID AAA certification for all US facilities

Fri, 06/16/2017 - 03:01
ERI, headquartered in Fresno, California, has received AAA certification from the National Association for Information Destruction (NAID), Phoenix, for its electronics recycling facility in Badin, North Carolina.

The Badin facility joins ERI’s other locations in California, Colorado, Indiana, Massachusetts, Texas and Washington in achieving NAID AAA certification. ERI has now achieved its goal of being NAID certified at all of its recycling locations nationwide. In addition, this accomplishment establishes ERI as having the largest NAID-certified footprint in the information technology asset disposition (ITAD) space in the U.S., according to the company.

NAID is an international professional organization that sets the industry standards for responsible data destruction. Its certification program was created through the combined efforts of the industry’s leading information security professionals. Its standards and practices are recognized globally.

“We’re proud to have achieved AAA certification from NAID in the great state of North Carolina,” says John S. Shegerian, chairman and CEO of ERI, continuing, “which completes our aim to adhere to the highest possible standards on an organizationwide level. Not only has ERI continuously met the strictest standards of environmental and operational excellence, we have now also reconfirmed our ongoing commitment to data destruction, as assessed by the planet’s leading authorities on the subject. Proper destruction of private digital data has become a crucially important issue and NAID certification shows we are setting the bar extremely high in that category.”

“Secure data destruction is an ever-growing concern for businesses and consumers and they want to know their private information is completely secure,” says NAID CEO Bob Johnson. “ERI is doing something good here, not only for itself, but for all of its customers. By achieving NAID AAA certification, ERI not only verifies the security of their processes, they actually fulfill their customers’ compliance obligations related to selecting a service provider.”

ERI is a leading recycler of electronics and a provider of ITAD and hardware destruction. ERI says it processes more than 275 million pounds of electronic scrap annually at eight locations, serving every zip code in the United States.


Dupont awards Plastipak for packaging technology

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 08:24
Plastipak Packaging Inc., headquartered in Plymouth, Michigan, has announced its Direct Object Printing (DOP) patented technology has earned a 2017 Silver Award for Packaging Innovation from DuPont Performance Materials.

In their 29th year, DuPont says the awards are the industry’s longest running, global, independently judged celebration of innovation and collaboration throughout the value chain.

The judges described Plastipak’s DOP capability as, “An outstanding accomplishment in packaging innovation due to excellence in technological advancement.”
DOP is a patented technology for packaging decoration. Using specially developed inks that are fully compatible with closed loop recycling and cured using low energy LED lights, images are directly ink-jet printed onto plastic bottles and containers, eliminating the need for separate labels, liners and adhesives.

Ink-jet printing facilitates variable data printing, meaning that each and every bottle printed can carry a different design without costly plate changes, label stock-holding and downtime associated with label change-overs. There are no minimum print runs for each design.

In practical terms for beverage and other companies, the benefits include rapid label changes for language or regulatory content as well as saving on logistical costs and processes associated with physical labels, all contributing to a package with a lower carbon footprint, according to Plasatipak. 

However, the biggest advantage is for marketers, Plastipak says, where DOP’s inherent flexibility and speed-to-market opens up the opportunity for more-targeted, regional and customized campaigns that can revolve around specific events or changing consumer trends.

Speaking about DOP, Lead Judge David Luttenberger says, “Judges for the competition were especially impressed with the degree of vibrancy of the ink on the container. This represents more than a step change in package decoration”.

Jennifer Renner, Plastipak’s business development manager, says, “With the DuPont Packaging Innovations awards being so prestigious, we are delighted with such an amazing result. Being recognized for our innovative package decoration solution is a testament to the talent, creativity and hard work of everyone at Plastipak.

“Awards like this are very important to us, sending out a strong message to our customers that we are a truly inspiring business that can solve challenges and deliver higher levels of industry innovation.”

Plastipak Packaging is a wholly owned subsidiary of Plastipak Holdings Inc., with European headquarters in Wrexham, U.K. The company designs and manufactures high-quality, rigid plastic containers for the food, beverage and consumer products industries. Plastipak operates more than 45 sites in the United States, South America and Europe, with a total of more than 6,000 employees


Study claims tire fiber strengthens concrete

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 06:27
University of British Columbia (UBC) engineers in Vancouver, British Columbia, have developed a type of concrete designed to be more resilient using recycled tires that could be used for structures like buildings, roads, dams and bridges while reducing landfill waste.

The researchers experimented with different proportions of recycled tire fibers and other materials used in concrete—cement, sand and water—before finding a working mix, which includes .35 percent tire fibers, according to researcher Obinna Onuaguluchi, a postdoctoral fellow in civil engineering at UBC.

Asphalt roads that incorporate rubber "crumbs" from shredded tires exist in the U.S., Germany, Spain, Brazil and China. But using the polymer fibers from tires can potentially improve the resilience of concrete and extend its lifespan.

"Our lab tests showed that fiber-reinforced concrete reduces crack formation by more than 90 percent compared to regular concrete," says Onuaguluchi. "Concrete structures tend to develop cracks over time, but the polymer fibers are bridging the cracks as they form, helping protect the structure and making it last longer."

UBC civil engineering professor Nemkumar Banthia, who supervised the work, says the environmental and industrial impact of the research is crucial. Up to three billion tires are produced around the world every year, generating close to six billion pounds of fiber when recycled.

"Most scrap tires are destined for landfill. Adding the fiber to concrete could shrink the tire industry's carbon footprint and also reduce the construction industry's emissions, since cement is a major source of greenhouse gases," says Banthia.

The new concrete was used to resurface the steps in front of the McMillan building on UBC's campus in May. Banthia's team is tracking its performance using sensors embedded in the concrete, looking at development of strain, cracking and other factors. So far, the results support laboratory testing that showed it can significantly reduce cracking.]]>

SWANA introduces mentorship program

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 03:51
Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), Silver Spring, Maryland, has announced a new program called MentorMatch, available to members on its online forum MySWANA.

Established to pair experienced professionals with fellow colleagues looking for career guidance or industry information, the MentorMatch program seeks to promote professional development, networking and overall member engagement.

By signing up on SWANA’s members-only social network, members can register as either “mentors,” “mentees” or both and match with other professionals in their area of interest. After matching, members enter a mentoring relationship for the next six months where mentors are available as a resource to discuss career development, professional goals and give industry-specific advice.

“We are excited to launch MentorMatch as our newest member benefit,” says Darryl Walter, SWANA’s director of membership. “Through this program, mentors and mentees can make connections with their fellow colleagues and in turn, help each other grow personally and professionally."

Through MentorMatch experienced professionals can enhance their leadership abilities and grow their professional network, while professionals and students new to the solid waste and recycling industry can both strengthen their skills and knowledge base, the organization says.  

“Many of SWANA’s rapidly growing membership are young professionals or others who are still learning about the industry; at the same time, many members have decades of solid waste experience,” says David Biderman, SWANA’s executive director and CEO. “MentorMatch provides a terrific way for the younger and newer members to learn more about this great industry, make new connections and enhance their expertise. I hope that many of SWANA’s more than 9,000 members take advantage of this program, which benefits not just the individuals involved, but the industry as a whole.”

To learn more about SWANA’s new MentorMatch program, visit]]>

WestRock completes acquisitions

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 02:20
WestRock Co., Norcross, Georgia, has announced it has acquired Multi Packaging Solutions International Ltd. (MPS) and certain operations of U.S. Corrugated Holdings Inc. 

Based in New York, MPS prints, manufactures and sells paperboard, paper and plastic packaging products in North America, Europe and Asia.

WestRock refinanced MPS debt as part of the transaction.

“I am excited about our acquisition of MPS, which is an important step in the continuing development of WestRock,” says Steve Voorhees, CEO of WestRock. “MPS is a leader in the value-added packaging sector, and the addition of MPS to WestRock strengthens our differentiated portfolio of paper and packaging solutions.”

WestRock acquired five corrugated converting facilities from U.S. Corrugated, a large independent manufacturer of corrugated products for packaging and displays, with headquarters in Washington, Pennsylvania. 

The five facilities are located in Ohio, Pennsylvania and Louisiana, through which the company provides a comprehensive suite of products and services to customers in a variety of end markets, including food and beverage, pharmaceuticals and consumer electronics.

The five facilities will operate as part of WestRock’s Corrugated Packaging segment. WestRock says it intends to integrate 105,000 tons of containerboard converted annually by the acquired facilities and another 50,000 tons under a long-term contract with a newly created company formed from the remaining assets of U.S. Corrugated. The transaction is expected to be accretive to earnings in year one.

WestRock is a leading provider of differentiated paper and packaging.


American Chemistry Council responds to UN’s marine litter issue

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 01:00
American Chemistry Council (ACC), Washington, has responded to a “Call for Action” that was announced at the United Nations Ocean Conference, held June 5-9, 2017, in New York.
The Call for Action is for voluntary commitments on marine litter. ACC’s Steve Russell, vice president of plastics, released the following statement: 

“Experts agree: to stem the tide of marine debris, we must prevent land-based trash from reaching our oceans in the first place. We must do so urgently, with an initial focus on parts of the world where such systems are lacking. This includes reducing waste, improved collection and sortation, matched with the latest recycling and recovery technologies.

While we congratulate the United Nations (UN) on its tremendous work this week to prioritize this important issue, we had hoped the outcomes would focus more on building political and financial support for improved waste management, or on deploying innovative recycling and energy recovery. Recommendations to instead ban or reduce the use of specific products may give the illusion of progress, but in fact don’t help us solve the bigger problem.

“Nevertheless, our industry remains committed to delivering solutions. Plastics makers currently have more than 260 projects around the world either planned, underway or completed to combat marine litter. Our combined efforts, to research and prevent marine debris around the world under our ‘Declaration of the Global Plastics Industry for Solutions on Marine Litter,’ have grown each year since 2011, when it was launched. Signed by 70 plastics associations in 35 countries, the declaration focuses on education, public policy, best practices, plastics recycling and recovery, plastic pellet containment and research. 

“In addition, we are working with leaders in regions where ocean plastic inputs are the highest, to ensure that waste management systems are a priority, and to catalyze investment in those systems.   And we are working with the UN to provide technical expertise and a range of commitments under the Global Partnership on Marine Litter. 

“People around the world rely on plastics in innumerable ways. Durable and lightweight, plastics are amazing materials that provide important societal benefits including energy and resource savings, preventing food waste, improved healthcare and consumer protection. But when plastics are improperly managed, their full sustainability benefits aren’t realized. Solutions require the cooperation of industry, civil society and other stakeholders to effect meaningful change.”


Keurig reports its pods will be recyclable in Canada by 2018

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 06:03
Keurig Green Mountain Inc. has launched its 12th annual Sustainability Report, highlighting its goal of producing K-Cup pods in Canada that are recyclable by the end of 2018.

The company has previously announced that its K-Cup pods, which are single-serving containers of coffee, will be recyclable by the end of 2020. The pods currently are not recyclable. 

The report’s theme of “Brewing Transformation” showcases Keurig’s efforts in communities across the globe in three main focus areas: environmental responsibility, strong supply chains, and thriving people and communities, according to the company.

 “As our new sustainability report shows, there’s much to be proud of here at Keurig,” says Bob Gamgort, Keurig CEO. “Our progress on the sustainability front will enable growth for the company, opening doors of opportunity for our employees, our customers and our business as a whole.”

In the Brewing Transformation report, Keurig highlights accelerated progress toward a number of priority 2020 environmental responsibility commitments, including:

  • targeting a new recyclability milestone, with plans to produce 100 percent of K-Cup pods in Canada in a recyclable format by the end of 2018;
  • meeting its 2020 target to reduce lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions of brewed beverages by 25 percent; and
  • near completion of its 2020 goals to balance 100 percent of the water used in brewing beverages, and 100 percent waste diversion from landfill for its operations across North America.

“We know that reducing the resources that we and our consumers use every day yields environmental sustainability for our business, and we are proud of our accelerated progress,” says Monique Oxender, Keurig’s chief sustainability officer. “Keeping those resources in use, at their highest value is also critical and delivering on pod recyclability achieves that in a meaningful way for our products and our communities.”

Additional highlights from this year’s sustainability report include:

Environmental Responsibility

A top sustainability priority for Keurig is ensuring 100 percent of K-Cup pods are recyclable by the end of 2020, and the company says it is on track to meet that goal. In addition to announcing its accelerated recyclability milestone in Canada, the report highlights Keurig’s work to improve recycling systems and education through investments totaling more than $1 million a year with partnership organizations such as The Closed Loop Fund and The Recycling Partnership. Keurig also continues its award-winning testing at recycling facilities, aimed at helping the industry understand how K-Cup pods and other plastic items travel through recovery equipment so the company can help to catalyze systemwide change in ensuring those plastics get a second life as a new consumer product.

Strong Supply Chains

Keurig says it aims to build strong supply chains and improve the livelihoods of coffee farmers within its supply chain. For three years, Keurig has supported Root Capitol’s Coffee Farmer Resilience Initiative, assisting farmers in fighting coffee rust disease and investing in the quality of their crops. In total, with the support of additional partnerships with organizations such as Save the Children and Catholic Relief Services’ Blue Harvest program, Keurig has engaged more than 417,000 people across its coffee supply chain to improve their farm management techniques, plan for changes in climate and strengthen their communities.

Full details of Keurig’s 2016 Sustainability Report can be found at For more information about Keurig’s recycling efforts, visit