- Thorough assessments of municipal recycling systems in North America
- Reports on the latest research
- Comprehensive overviews of compelling legislative and policy options
- Attendance by all the key players
- Numerous networking opportunities
- A tradeshow featuring the latest innovations and services
Who should attend Resource Recycling Conference:
- Managers of local recycling systems
- Recycling service providers
- Processors and consumers of recyclables
- Environmental organization executives
- State and federal waste management officials
- Potental investors
The information below is a look at some of the topics to be discussed at the 2012 Resource Recycling Conference. More information and a schedule will be available soon.
Top recycling executives focus on the trends and issues
In an interactive and wide ranging panel discussion at the conference, some of the top leaders at major recycling collection and processing firms will describe how materials recovery will change in the coming years. Executives such as Bill Caesar from Waste Management and Steve Dunn with Greenstar will provide their views on the critical issues affecting recycling and composting in North America.
Producer responsibility for packaging and printed materials
A growth in extended producer responsibility (EPR) could represent a significant cultural change in the United States. Join EPR advocate, Paul Gardner, as he shares details about a brand new organization, Recycling Reinvented, which offers a promising opportunity to serve a pivotal role in the EPR game. As support builds for producer responsibility, Recycling Reinvented is committed to advancing recycling rates for waste packaging and printed material in the United States through an EPR model.
The packaging industry wants to push recycling levels upward
An alliance of firms and associations involved throughout the packaging supply chain has been working together on a plan to boost materials recovery in the U.S. Beth Schmidt of Alcoa will describe how the Action to Accelerate Recycling project is being designed and what efforts we’ll soon see to boost recycling rates.
Environmental issues are critical within the packaging industry
Following the industry’s success in forming an organization in Europe, packaging firms in North America have launched a new organization – AMERIPEN – to provide a way for packagers and brand owners to work together on key environmental issues, including recycling. A top AMERIPEN leader will explain how the organization will be involved in contemporary recycling issues and debates.
You’re becoming an SSMer and no longer a recycler
Recycling is undergoing a critical change. Rather than just focusing on how to manage end-of-life materials, a growing number of key thought leaders are saying we need to use a cradle-to-cradle way of addressing materials use. Termed sustainable materials management, this shift in how we attack the waste issue results in startling new ways of getting the job done. David Allaway with Oregon’s environmental agency is a leading thinker in this area and will lay out why we need to adopt sustainable materials management systems.
Do we really know how much material is being recycled?
Most recycling leaders agree that the quality of data in this field is less than stellar. Poor data affects decision making and planning. In that light, the U.S. EPA has an important effort underway to reassess how recycling rates are determined. Ron Vance will provide details in Austin about the agency’s work in improving data collection and measurement.
Outlook for global recovered paper markets
What will the domestic recovered paper demand in North America look like in the next two years? How massive will the Asian recovered paper import market be? And what does this mean to the North American market? Hannah Zhao of RISI is a leading expert on the world recovered paper market and will share her expertise in this compelling presentation on the current landscape and future projections for global paper markets.
The office paper recycling situation
What is the big view on the recycling office paper? The director of fiber procurement at SCA Americas, David Knight, will assess what's on the horizon for office paper as well as the aggressive actions of Chinese recovered office paper consumers. You can fight tooth and nail against mixed collection streams or you can, to a reasonable degree, figure out ways to handle this material. Get all the relevant information you need from this stellar speaker.
Current and projected paper recovery
Are you wondering where we are at and where we are going with recovered paper? Stan Lancey, the chief economist at the American Forest & Paper Association, will discuss the current and projected recovered paper demand, including recent trends in capacity utilization. Comprehensive information will also be presented on the paper industry’s continued efforts to recover fiber.
How materials processing will change
Numerous local governments and private companies plan to open a MRF or upgrade an existing plant. Research by Dylan de Thomas of Resource Recycling indicates that the MRF of tomorrow will be significantly different than sorting plants operating today. Come to Austin to learn about the new and redesigned sorting systems that are entering the market.
Debunking Plastics Recycling Myths
Plastic recycling can be confusing. Packaging is changing, recycling standards are adapting, technology is improving and all that means that there's a good chance what you knew about plastics recycling - or thought you knew – might have changed. This interactive, fast paced session with Keefe Harrison (Resource Recycling Systems) will address the changes to the industry plus some of those classic myths you might hear from your public (yes, plastic can be recycled more than once!). Bring your best myth and put it to the test!
What role can non-profit organizations play in the future of recycling?
Non-profit groups are leading the way for the future of recycling. Matt McKenna, president and CEO of Keep America Beautiful, will give a broad assessment of how large-scale non-profit organizations can move the recycling needle in these times of scarce governmental resources for improved materials and recovery.
Curbside recycling’s newest commodity
Research funded by the American Chemistry Council shows that hundreds of U.S. communities are now collecting mixed rigid plastics packaging, such as yogurt tubs, paint buckets and pails. Ali Briggs of Plastics Recycling Update will describe how this packaging is being handled, plus provide details on the more than 50 firms buying baled mixed rigid plastics. Are mixed rigid plastics a new item for your program? We’ll provide the answer.
Producing oil from plastics
Many plastic products, such as dirty agricultural items and motor-oil bottles, cannot be recycled, yet represent an important resource. A number of scientists and technologists have developed ways to convert these unrecycled plastics into energy products, such as gases and oil. And now a handful of firms are actively building and operating plastics-to-oil plants. We will feature, for the first time, the results of an industrywide assessment on these technologies and firms.
Socially marketing recycling: is it worth it?
Does social marketing beat regular outreach, or is it sizzle without substance? Skumatz Economic Research Associates, Inc. (SERA) conducted detailed research about recycling outreach programs utilizing social marketing, including a thorough analysis of social marketing's impact and cost-effectiveness. The leading resource economist for SERA, Juri Freeman, will provide a comparative analysis of retention rates and long run cost-effectiveness based on almost two years of follow-up data.
PET thermoform recycling: its time has come
There’s a push underway to improve the recycling of PET thermoform packaging, but what steps is the industry specifically taking in advancing this goal and what does it mean for material recovery? Mike Schedler, technical director for NAPCOR, will offer an expert review of the thermoform project in regards to this new recyclable. This critical session is a prime opportunity to learn more about the rapidly changing package marketplace.
Rather than market development, we need market retention
A number of government agencies and organizations are striving to boost the use of recyclable materials in their locales. But a wide alliance of recycling interests in one state are looking at market demand in a different light. Amy Roth of the Oregon Recycling Markets Retention Project will discuss how governments, unions, academics, environmental groups and industry are working together to assure that recycling end users in that state survive and thrive.
How are the similar; how do they differ?
What distinguishes America’s top recycling communities from others? This intriguing question was recently the focus of important research performed by a North Carolina county. We’ve asked Michael Talbert to join us in Austin to lay out the key findings of his research and to provide advice in how communities can improve their recycling performance.
Can materials processing become more efficient?
Recycling leaders in Canada’s largest province are looking at ways to improve the overall recycling collection and processing system. A large-scale study will be completed this summer that describes the current MRF system and offers an overview on how the province-wide network can become even more efficient.
Boosting recycling and composting in smaller towns
Boulder County, Colorado is setting an example for small communities located near a metropolitan area in achieving a greater diversion rate. Lisa Friend (Boulder County) will share the impressive results from a federally-funded “Zero Waste” project to boost recycling and composting in the county's mountain towns. Lisa will dish out all the details that went into this effort, from securing equipment to workshop events.
Becoming more professional
The growth in communities, programs and businesses striving for sustainability has created a demand for qualified staff trained in recycling, sustainable resource management and zero waste. To meet this need, Recycling Organizations of North America (RONA) has been working to establish a national standard for professional certification programs for sustainable resource management, including recycling. Learn all about this national standard in this timely and practical session, including how other organizations have looked to the national standard to fashion their own programs.
Plastic bag and wrap recovery: 50 percent increase since 2005
The issue of plastic bags and film has been all over the news in the past year. Largely absent from the public debate is the current status of plastic film and bag recovery. A leading expert, Nina Bellucci Butler (Moore Recycling Associates), will provide an integral assessment of the recovered film marketplace based on the results of an extensive processors survey. Learn about innovative programs and industry initiatives to continue the growth in plastic film recovery.