#recycling
Recycling Struggling Due to Pandemic and Electronic Waste Breaks Records

Recycling Struggling Due to Pandemic and Electronic Waste Breaks Records

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused turmoil in recycling programs and markets for recycled goodsMeanwhile, a UN report released last week found that electronic waste produced globally jumped to a record of 53.6 million tons or about 16 pounds per person.

Why This Matters: And while residential waste is greatly increasing, fewer materials are being recycled other than cardboard, which is much in demand.  Recycling, like so many other local programs, needs federal financial support and soon.

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Ford Takes Comprehensive Approach To Sustainability, Will Be Carbon Neutral by 2050

Ford Takes Comprehensive Approach To Sustainability, Will Be Carbon Neutral by 2050

In its annual Sustainability Report, Ford Motors made several key pledges in addition to the promise to be carbon neutral as a company by 2050.  In addition, they will use 100 percent locally sourced renewable energy for all manufacturing plants globally by 2035, aspire to achieve zero air emissions from our facilities, only use recycled and renewable plastics in our vehicles globally and eliminate single-use plastics from our operations by 2030, and achieve true zero waste to landfill across our operations, among other social responsibility commitments.

Why This Matters:  Other car companies have focused on products — Daimler Chrysler, VW, and Tesla come to mind.

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America’s Recycling Outlook, An Interview with WWF’s Roberta Elias

America’s Recycling Outlook, An Interview with WWF’s Roberta Elias

We sat down with the World Wildlife Fund’s Director of Policy, Roberta Elias, to ask her about the outlook for recycling in the United States and how the federal government can help us move to more circular systems for our waste.   ODP: Increased recycling seems like a no-brainer yet in the United States, our […]

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Remaking Plastic #ForNature

Remaking Plastic #ForNature

By Sheila Bonini, Senior Vice President, Private Sector Engagement, World Wildlife Fund U.S. In recent years, a growing chorus of voices—among consumers, in business and across government—has urged immediate action to reduce plastic pollution. It’s a shift driven by countless images of natural habitats befouled by plastic waste and animals harmed or killed, as well […]

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Why is Our Recycling System So Broken? How Do We Fix It?

Why is Our Recycling System So Broken? How Do We Fix It?

In 1960, Americans generated 2.68 pounds of garbage per day and by 2017, it had grown to an average of 4.51 pounds. While many people dutifully put items into their recycling bins, much of it does not actually end up being recycled. There are several reasons why our recycling system isn’t working well: 40% of […]

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A Florida Beach Reopened – People Left It Trashed

A Florida Beach Reopened – People Left It Trashed

The people who flocked to Cocoa Beach in Florida last weekend left behind 13,000 pounds of litter, prompting the police to threaten a crackdown.  Local officials believe that as social distancing and stay in place orders are loosened in parts of the state, there has been an influx of day-trippers who show up and leave […]

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Plastic Companies Want $1B in Bailout Funds For Recycling

Plastic Companies Want $1B in Bailout Funds For Recycling

Pointing to the rise in plastic being used during the COVID pandemic, an alliance of the nation’s largest chemical companies called the “Recover Coalition” is requesting that Congress give them $1b to deal with the current lack of a functioning recycling system in the U.S.  The industry group, in a letter to legislators, explained that […]

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New Mutant Enzyme Breaks Down Plastic Fast – Could Solve Recycling Problems

Researchers at Carbios, a French company, report in the Journal Nature that they’ve “engineered an enzyme that can convert 90% of that same plastic back to its pristine starting materials” and they are working to open a demonstration plant next year.  The enzyme breaks down plastic all the way into a recyclable form — the company, in collaboration with Pepsi and L’Oréal, hopes to have market scale production within 5 years.

Why This Matters: 70 million tons of Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) is produced annually.

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Plastics Industry Oversold Recycling to Americans, Now What?

by Zoey Shipley and Miro Korenha NPR and PBS Frontline recently announced a new joint investigation which has revealed that since the 1980s, “the plastics industry spent tens of millions of dollars promoting recycling through ads, recycling projects, and public relations, telling people plastic could be and should be recycled” all in an effort to […]

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Marin Woman Builds Effort to Get Amazon to Reuse Delivery Boxes

Marin Woman Builds Effort to Get Amazon to Reuse Delivery Boxes

Marin County, CA resident and former marketing consultant Carolyn Lund got fed up with all the waste she saw accumulating in her community as a result of Amazon deliveries. That’s why she set out to spearhead a local effort to get Amazon to pick up their used boxes. The Amazon to Reuse Boxes pilot program […]

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The Big Recyclability Problem of Wind Turbines

The Big Recyclability Problem of Wind Turbines

Wind energy has seen impressive growth in the United States over the past decade with offshore wind standing as the next big phase in renewable energy expansion. However, now that the first generation of wind turbines are nearing the end of their lifespan, we’re being faced with a growing sustainability concern: what to do with […]

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Can This Year’s Super Bowl Score Zero?

Can This Year’s Super Bowl Score Zero?

The organizers of Super Bowl LIV at Miami’s Hard Rock Stadium have a game plan to get to zero — they want none of the big game’s expected 160,000 pounds of waste to end up in a landfill.  Our friends at National Geographic reported this week that the organizers’ plan is that aluminum cups and cans (yep no plastic ones) will go to a recycling center, utensils and napkins to a compost facility, and the rest to a plant where it will be burned for energy.

Why This Matters:  There is no bigger stage than the Super Bowl to send a message about reducing our trash “footprint.”

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