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November 2014

NERC’s Advisory Members

Distinguished Benefactors

Consumer Technology Association (CTA)




Waste Management

Sustaining Members

  • American Chemistry Council

  • American Forest and Paper Association

  • American Iron & Steel Institute

  • Association of Plastic Recyclers (APR)

  • Casella Resource Solutions

  • Coca-Cola Beverages Northeast, Inc.

  • Council of State Governments/Eastern Regional Conference

  • CURC

  • Dart Container

  • Glass Recycling Coalition

  • Good Point Recycling

  • Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI)

  • International Bottled Water Association

  • Keep America Beautiful

  • Keurig Dr. Pepper

  • Marcal, A Soundview Paper Company

  • Mattress Recycling Coalition

  • MRM

  • National Waste & Recycling Association

  • Nestlé Waters North America


  • Organix Solutions

  • PaintCare

  • Plastics Industry Association

  • Re-TRAC

  • Recycling Partnership

  • Republic Services

  • Schaefer Systems International, Inc.

  • Sims Municipal Recycling

  • Strategic Materials

  • Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council (SPLC)


  • US Composting Council (USCC)

A list of all the logos of our Sustaining Members can be found under Advisory Members


Renewing Supporting Members

Member Spotlight - Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI)







NERC’s mission is to promote sustainable materials management by supporting traditional and innovative solid waste best practices, focusing on waste prevention, toxics reduction, reuse, recycling and organics recovery.

State and Advisory Member Updates, as well articles of General Interest and guest blogs are provided as submissions to NERC and may not reflect the policy or position of the Northeast Recycling Council, Inc.

NERC is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


We are delighted to thank and welcome NERC's renewing Supporting Members - the Newspaper Association of America (NAA), Professional Recyclers of Pennsylvania (PROP),Rockland County Solid Waste Management, and Southeastern CT Regional Resource Recovery Authority (SCRRRA).

To see a complete listing of NERC's members and supporters, as well as the benefits of membership, visit the NERC Advisory Membership web page.

The broad spectrum of interests represented by NERC's Advisory Members, Individual Supporters, and Board Members and their willingness to participate significantly contribute to the unique and important role that NERC plays in recycling in the region.

NERC Member Spotlight - the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI)

Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Inc. (ISRI) is a Washington, DC-based trade isri_logoassociation representing more than 1,600 for-profit companies – ranging from small, family-owned businesses to large, multi-national corporations -- operating at more than 3,500 facilities in the United States and 34 countries worldwide.

ISRI members are manufacturers and processors, brokers and industrial consumers of scrap commodities, including ferrous and nonferrous metals, paper, electronics, rubber, plastics, glass, and textiles. ISRI's associate members include equipment and service providers to the scrap recycling industry. Manufacturers and sellers of equipment and services—such as shredders, balers, cranes, cargo transporters, computer systems, and more— find value in promoting the scrap recycling industry through their membership in ISRI.

For more than 200 years, scrap recycling businesses have been vital contributors to the U.S. economy, job creation, global trade, energy savings, and resource sustainability. Today, scrap recycling is a multi-billion dollar industry, with an estimated 138,000 employees.

ISRI assists members by providing service in several broad categories including: safety, networking and education, market research and reporting, regulatory and legal information, industry-specific publications, and representation.

ISRI Safety

Safety is a core value for ISRI.  ISRI leads the industry in the production and distribution of training materials designed to improve the safety and operations of the scrap industry.  ISRI provides a number of safety services to all of its members that include: 1-Day Safety Management Blueprint Training; ISRI Safety 10-Hour Training; 2-3 Day Transportation Safety Assessment Program; 2-Day Material Handler Train-the-Trainer; and, The Circle of Safety Excellence TM - a new initiative offered by ISRI to recognize members that willingly share safety data and best practices for the betterment of their own safety operations.

ISRI Advocacy

ISRI advocates on behalf of the industry before the U.S. Congress, federal and state agencies, state governments and international bodies on a variety of important issues directly and indirectly impacting the recycling industry. For example, ISRI's State Policy Program provides those in the industry with the tools they need to comply with current regulations, help to identify legislative policy trends in neighboring states and nationally, and engage state officials on the bills that may impact the industry.

ISRI Education and Training

ISRI and its chapters host dozens of educational and networking events each year to foster the growth of professionals within the recycling industry.  The annual ISRI Convention and Exposition is the largest scrap recycling event in the world bringing together industry leaders, equipment manufacturers, and policymakers to discover the latest technology and recycling equipment, participate in a host of workshops and network with customers and clients throughout the world.  ISRI 2015 Convention and Exposition will take place April 21-25, in Vancouver BC Canada.

ISRI Commodities and Standards

ISRI provides weekly updates to members on the economic, commodity and scrap market developments affecting the industry. ISRI publishes the Scrap Specifications Circular that provides guidelines for buying and selling a variety of processed scrap commodities, including ferrous, nonferrous, paper, plastics, electronics, rubber, and glass to ensure consistency and standardization for the worldwide sale and purchase of scrap commodities.

ISRI supports the implementation of RIOS™ - the Recycling Industry Operating Standard™.  Specifically designed for the recycling industry, RIOS integrates the key operational elements for quality, environmental, health, and safety bringing them together into one streamlined management system standard.

The R2/RIOS™ certification is solely for electronics recyclers to demonstrate to customers that electronics are being recycled with the highest standards for data privacy, environmental controls, employee health and safety and corporate responsibility.  R2/RIOS combines the strengths of the R2:2013 standard with RIOS to provide a comprehensive set of standards for electronics recyclers.

ISRI Community and Public Relations

ISRI offers a number of public relations materials to educate local communities about the benefits of recycling.

The ISRI Scrap Yearbook 2014 is a great primer for the industry that provides current and historical industry analysis.  ISRI has collaborated with the Jason Learning to develop a recycling education campaign for students in kindergarten through 12th grade.  ISRI routinely works with members and law enforcement to participate in Metals Theft Training seminars covering scrap recycling operations, the impact of metals theft, metals identification, local statutes, and ISRI resources including and

ISRI joined NERC as an Advisory Member in 2008. According to Robin Wiener, President for ISRI, “The scrap recycling industry is uniquely positioned to meet the challenges of today’s world, offering tangible sustainable solutions for balancing economic growth and environmental stewardship, contributing to economic and environmental sustainability for our nation and our world. Our participation in organizations such as NERC allows ISRI to add its voice at NERC events and to listen to other NERC Advisory Members and Board Members on issues and concerns they have with recycling.”


Walk-in Registrations Offered for NERC’s 2014 Fall Conference

If you missed registering online for NERC’s Fall Conference—The New Era of Recycling—you are still welcome to register at the door.  The Conference will be held on November 6 – 7 at the Lord Jeffery Inn in Amherst, Massachusetts.  The conference includes plenary sessions and seven concurrent sessions. In addition, the Conference will offer networking opportunities with 27 recycling industry experts, recycling professionals from the U.S. and Canada, recycling trade associations, businesses, universities, non-profit organizations, consultants, and exhibitors.

Platinum Sponsors

SRILOGOCOLOR        isri_logo

Silver Sponsors

                        ResourceRecyclingLogo      PaintCarelogo-jpg-largerecyclingtodaylogoB

New West Gypsum logo    Carton Council  untha-simple

For more information, contact Conference Organizer: Mary Ann Remolador, NERC’s Assistant Director

School Recycling & Composting in Bennington

In order to help Vermont schools comply with the State’s Universal Recycling law (Act 148) and educate young people about recycling and composting, NERC was awarded a grant to work with Bennington schools. Vermont’s Universal Recycling law (Act 148) bans recyclables from disposal by 2015, along with food scraps beginning with the largest generators in 2014 and phased in to a full ban by 2020. Vermont schools will need to implement recycling and organics diversion programs to comply.

In October, NERC staff visited five schools: Manchester Elementary Middle School, Sunderland Elementary School, and the Mettawee Community School in the Bennington Rutland Supervisory Union, as well as Arlington Memorial High School/Middle School and Fisher Elementary School in the Battenkill Valley Supervisory Union.

NERC staff met with school personnel and students during the visits and conducted a waste assessment at each of the schools. The waste assessments will help to establish a baseline estimate of school waste generation before expanding or implementing recycling and composting. A “walk-through” at each school was done to document existing waste reduction and recycling programs and to determine potential improvements to be made in existing efforts. At Manchester Elementary, students conducted a waste sort of trash collected the previous day from 7th grade classrooms. NERC also conducted a cafeteria waste audit at each school—collecting and weighing food scraps and soiled paper. Logistics and staffing needs for implementing or expanding food scrap diversion at each of the schools was discussed.

Results from the waste assessments and audits will be compiled, along with recommendations to each school for improving recycling efforts, as well as a suggested plan and a list of needs for implementing or expanding composting. Both Manchester and Sunderland currently divert food scraps. Manchester requested assistance in expanding their program to capture scraps generated by their pre-K and other students who eat in their classrooms. Sunderland’s food scraps are being collected by a local small farmer for chicken feed.

A second visit to the schools will be conducted in November to implement the composting efforts and work with schools to track their diversion efforts and assess trash collection cost saving opportunities. Once food scrap composting is implemented at these schools, they will present models to other schools in the Bennington area, and throughout Vermont.

For information contact Athena Lee Bradley, NERC Projects Manager. Resources from NERC’s previous school waste reduction, recycling, and composting project are posted on the NERC website (conduct a search under “Schools”)

Learn About Responsible Recycling, Paper & Energy Conservation, & Green Procurement of Office Equipment - Webinar

If you're interested in learning how your organization can responsibly recycle its office equipment, be sure that your office equipment meets green purchasing standards, and avoids energy and paper usage, then join a free webinar on December 2nd to learn about the State Electronics Challenge. The Challenge is a free, national program open to local, regional, tribal, and state governments, including public & private K-12 schools, colleges and universities, and non-profit organizations. 

Participants in the Challenge are provided with access to free technical assistance, tools, resources, and recognition.  It also provides annual sustainability reports for each organization based on its unique activities.  

To learn more about the State Electronics Challenge, register for the upcoming introductory webinar: December 2, 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Eastern.

For more information, contact or visit the website at

Who's Who in the State Electronics Challenge

New organizations, large and small, continue to join the State Electronics Challenge. We are delighted to welcome the newest participants:

There are now 138 organizations, with more than 172,500 employees in 36 states that have joined as "Partners". 

The Challenge is a free, national program open to local, regional, tribal, and state governments, including public & private K-12 schools, colleges and universities, and non-profit organizations.  The program is supported through the generous support of its sponsors: Samsung, Panasonic, the Consumer Electronics Association, and the R2/RIOS program.

NERC Blog Worth Repeating – By 2100, We’ll Be Living in a World of Garbage

First posted on August 19, 2014, the article was written by Ben Schiller, a New York-based staff writer for Co.Exist.

People are moving to cities, and people are getting richer. Rich people in cities are incredibly wasteful. In 100 years, the world may be generating four times as much garbage as it does now--unless we act to put a price on thoughtless disposal.

We have a garbage problem. Not just here in the United States, where the average person throws away their body weight every month--but increasingly around the world as well. Growing prosperity and urbanization are leading to a big surge in the waste mountain. And, a new analysis suggests the problem is likely to keep growing this century, unless there's serious change.

Global waste has bulged 10-fold in the last century. And by 2025, it's set to double from where it is today, according to a study in the journal Nature. The chief reason: newly rich cities of the developing world. Dumps like Laogang in Shanghai and Jardim Gramacho in Rio de Janeiro are already overflowing. China's solid waste is set to grow from about 573,000 tons a day in 2005 to 1.5 million tons in 2025.

Urban-dwellers produce four times as much waste as country folk.

"As a country becomes richer, the composition of its waste changes. With more money comes more packaging, imports, electronic waste, and broken toys and appliances," says the article by Daniel Hoornweg, Perinaz Bhada-Tata and Chris Kennedy. In turn, that leads to environmental problems, like toxic leakages from landfills, and plastic clogging oceans and rivers.

The analysis is based on population projections and material consumption rates. East Asia is now the fastest growing waste region, with South Asia set to take over after 2025 and sub-Saharan Africa after 2050. Waste rates in richer countries, like the U.S., are also still rising. But the authors expect them to stop growing by mid-century.

"Although OECD countries will peak by 2050 and Asia–Pacific countries by 2075, waste will continue to rise in the fast-growing cities of sub-Saharan Africa. The urbanization trajectory of Africa will be the main determinant of the date and intensity of global peak waste," the article says.

China's solid waste is set to grow from about 573,000 tons a day in 2005 to 1.5 million tons in 2025.

Urbanization is key. People in cities generate twice as much waste as rural residents, even if they have the same income. Rural communities normally use less packaged products and throw away less food. When the authors account for income differences, urban-dwellers produce four times as much waste as country folk.

The authors say the world could produce more than 12 million tons of garbage per day by the end of the century, if we don't shift from our current trajectory. They recommend the rest of the world take a cue from San Francisco's book (it has a zero-waste policy), and introduce disposal fees that put a price on waste generation. "Increased education, equality, and targeted economic development" could cut population growth, limiting waste naturally, they add. Better material reuse could keep a lot of material out of landfills.

We could bring forward global "peak waste" to 2075. "Through a move towards stable or declining populations, denser and better-managed cities consuming fewer resources, and greater equity and use of technology, we can bring peak waste forward and down. The environmental, economic, and social benefits would be enormous," says the article.

Ben Schiller is a New York-based staff writer for Co.Exist, and also contributes to the FT and Yale e360.

NERC welcomes Guest Blog submissions. To inquire about submitting an article contact Athena Lee Bradley, Projects Manager. Disclaimer: Guest blog’s represent the opinion of the writer and may not reflect the policy or position of the Northeast Recycling Council, Inc.


NERC Completes Model EPP Specs & Purchasing Guidelines

Over the last two years, NERC developed three model specifications and purchasing guidelines, including:

The documents are intended to make purchasing of “green” paper, toner cartridges, and office supplies easier by providing purchasers with up-to-date, specific language that can be used in vendor bids and purchasing contracts.

NERC used a collaborative process for developing the specifications and purchasing guidelines, including: working with teams of experts in government purchasing, EPP (Environmentally Preferable Purchasing) and in environmentally preferable products. NERC also solicited public comments on the document drafts before finalizing them.

NERC would like to thank the following people that assisted in developing the specifications:

Copy and Multipurpose Paper Spec Writing Team

  • California - Karl Bruskotter, City of Santa Monica
  • New York - Bob Lazarra, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Oregon - Becky Wheeler, Eugene Oregon Purchasing Office
  • Responsible Purchasing Network and Conservatree - Susan Kinsella

Monochrome Toner Cartridges Spec Writing Team

  • New York - Beth Meer, Commissioner's Policy Office, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Vermont - Brian Berini, Vermont Buildings and General Services
  • Washington - Jason Edens, City of Seattle and Shirli Axelrod, Seattle Public Utilities
  • Responsible Purchasing Network - Alicia Culver
  • Responsible Purchasing Network and Conservatree - Susan Kinsella
  • Rochester Institute of Technology, Imaging Testing Laboratories - Robert Matesic

Office Supplies Spec Writing Team

  • California - Karl Bruskotter, City of Santa Monica
  • New Jersey - AnnMarie Weidemann, Division of Purchase and Property, New Jersey  Department of Treasury
  • Oregon - Stacey Foreman, City of Portland
  • Responsible Purchasing Network - Alicia Culver

This project was made possible with funding from the Roy A. Hunt Foundation.

For more information on the specs or the project, contact Mary Ann Remolador, NERC’s Assistant Director.

Organic Materials Management Guide Available

Organic Materials Management and Composting for Rural, Small, and Tribal Communities—NERC’s latest guidance document—has been posted on the NERC website.

The guide is designed to assist decision makers, solid waste staff, citizen activists and others in developing and expanding yard debris, food scrap, and other organics management strategies.

In 1960, Compost Science, now BioCycle, began publication. Its founder, Jerome Goldstein stated in the inaugural issue’s editorial: “We are thoroughly convinced that there is a need to conserve this country’s as well as the world’s natural resources. We believe that converting municipal and industry organic wastes into useful products would be an effective step forward in a long-range conservation program.” More than 50 years later, organic materials continue to be undervalued as a resource.

Discarding organic materials as waste impacts our environment, energy use, and economy, taking up landfill space and contributing to increased greenhouse gas emissions. Organic materials can instead be turned into viable new products, including mulch, compost, fuel, and electricity, helping to create locally-based jobs and supporting local and regional economies.

Focusing on organics material management offers communities a cost-effective opportunity to beneficially develop these resources. This Guidance Document presents best management practices for developing and implementing programs that promote the “hierarchy” of organics management—reduce, reuse (recover), recycle (compost or anaerobic digestion). It is specifically designed as a “how to” guide to meet the needs of rural, small, and tribal communities. Strategies and program options are presented under each facet of the hierarchy. “Action Tips” and “Who’s Doing It” sections (case study examples) are also included within each strategy/program.

The guide is a culmination of NERC’s work and research conducted through “Best Management Practices for Organics and Debris Management in Rural Towns” project, funded through a USDA grant. Numerous organics management documents, case studies, presentations, and webinar recordings developed through the project are available on the NERC website (conduct a “search for resources” under Compost/Organics).

For more information, contact Athena Lee Bradley, NERC Project Manager.


TPCH Launches Another Test Project for Toxics in Packaging—Focused on Wine Bottles, Flexible PVC, & Pigments

The Toxics in Packaging Clearinghouse (TPCH) launched a research study that will screen several types of packaging for the presence of 4 metals – lead, cadmium, mercury, and hexavalent chromium – which are prohibited in nineteen U.S. states by toxics in packaging laws. Previous studies identified the potential for several packaging types — imported green wine bottles, flexible PVC packaging, and highly pigmented plastic bags— to contain lead and cadmium.

TPCH is collecting retail packaging samples through the end of the year. In January, the packaging samples will be screened using an x-ray fluorescent (XRF) instrument that allows for the inexpensive and rapid detection of elemental composition. Samples that screen positive for the restricted metals will be sent to laboratories for confirmatory testing.

TPCH will use the results to assess overall compliance with state laws, and the success of previous TPCH education and outreach efforts. As with past projects, TPCH member states may use the test results to pursue enforcement of their state laws.

This project focuses on packaging materials and product sectors identified in prior TPCH studies as having a potential for non-compliance. Priority samples include green wine bottles originating in Europe and South America, and flexible PVC plastic bags used to package products such as home furnishings, sporting goods, and personal care items. In addition, the project will test highly pigmented single-use plastic bags.

For more information on toxics in packaging, visit the Toxics in Packaging Clearinghouse website.


RecycleCT Aims To Boost Recycling Statewide

Connecticut has launched a new foundation aimed at increasing recyclinRecycleCT_Solidg rates through education and outreach.

The RecycleCT Foundation will kick off a statewide marketing campaign in late October in partnership with Keep America Beautiful. A new website — — will offer state residents easy-to-use tips on reuse and recycling and invites users to commit to sustainable practices via an online pledge. This first-phase marketing campaign will reach an estimated one million state residents with recycling-related information by January 1, 2015.

In the long term, RecycleCT supports the state’s goal of 60% diversion through a combination of statewide outreach and local and school-based programming. RecycleCT will offer grants to local programs beginning in 2015.

As a state-chartered foundation, RecycleCT leverages both public and private resources in support of the state’s recycling goals. RecycleCT was created in June 2014 by Public Act 14-94, and is governed by the commissioners of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) and the Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD), along with other appointed board members.

For more information on RecycleCT, contact DEEP Project Manager Lee Sawyer or visit


Survey Will Help Improve Compostable Plastics Toolkit - Closes Nov. 5

The Composting Council Research & Education Foundation, in partnership with the City of San José, is working to improve the Compostable Plastics Toolkit.  Please take this SHORT survey (whether you have used or even seen the Toolkit yet).  We would REALLY appreciate it!

We launched an online toolkit for Compostable Plastics earlier this year. Our goal is to help municipalities and others understand the opportunities and challenges presented by compostable food service-ware, bags and other compostable products so they can determine for themselves the best method to manage compostable products given their unique circumstances and programs.

This is an exciting time for the compostable plastics industry! New policies and technologies around plastics are being created and implemented to help reduce waste and increase organics collection. The industry is constantly changing and we want to include your input on the tools, information, and search features currently on the Compostable Plastics Toolkit. This is important to effectively promote the Toolkit and national awareness of compostable plastics. Your input will help create a more complete and updated Toolkit that represents the latest industry trends and needs. 

Yellow Pages Sustainability Lifecycle

Yellow Pages publishers proudly produce directories as part of a sustainable lifecycle, as illustrated in a new infographic released by the Local Search Association. The infographic sheds light on the often misunderstood origin of directory paper and the industry’s efforts to recycle for the next generation of directories and other products.

Yellow Pages publishers have been helping local businesses succeed for over 100 years. While the services they offer to local businesses have evolved to include digital and mobile solutions, print directories remain an important marketing channel for many businesses.

Earlier this year, The Local Search Association also released the 2014 Sustainability Report which contains more detail on individual publisher efforts and commitment to sustainability. The industry Sustainability Reports have always been featured on the front page of, and we invite you to check out our 2014 report as well.

UNTHA Acquires New Customer

UNTHA Deutschland GmbH, a division of one of the world’s leading providers of recycling technology, is now providing secure file and data destruction services to one of Europe’s leading providers of file and data storage, LAGER 3000 GmbH. Established in 1999, LAGER 3000 also offers  archive management and file digitalization solutions. The company's customers include well-known banks, public authorities, courts, insurance companies, and trade and commerce firms.

Recently, LAGER 3000 started offering customers a secure file and data destruction service according to the new DIN 66399 security standard. UNTHA Deutschland GmbH was commissioned to design and implement the file shredding system. As a full-service provider, they offer a customized, single-stage system solution. The core of the system is an UNTHA RS40 shredder with 2 x 22 kW and a special cutting unit. UNTHA’s shredding systems meet the newest DIN 66399 security standards, setting their technology apart from others in the field. An independent certification authority has confirmed compliance with the standard and issued a respective certification.

UNTHA’s system's flexibility was another key factor in its being selected by LAGER 3000. Depending on the customer's needs, the system is also able to securely shred data carriers, such as hard drives or optical storage media, in addition to files.

"Our new file destruction system is very flexible in regards to the output material and the various security levels,” explained Oliver Riemer, managing director of LAGER 3000.

The new file destruction system will be running daily for at least eight hours. An underfloor conveyor feeds the material into the four-shaft shredding machine where it is shredded. A reverse conveyor belt moves the file and data pieces to a baling press. The pressed bales are recycled in the regional paper mills and are used for paper production. Shredded hard drives and optical carrier media are moved into a separate skeleton container by the reverse conveyor belt and are subsequently picked up by regional disposal companies.

In addition, a dust removal system installed on the shredder hopper ensures clean air in the hall. The system comes with three screens of different sizes which can be inserted quickly and easily into the shredder depending on the required security level.

This new system has provided LAGER 3000 with the opportunity to expand its business segments, and the company is now able to offer customers secure and certified file and data carrier destruction. 

For more information, visit