Beyond RCRA: prospects for waste & materials management in the year 2020; Final White Paper

Coming hard on the heels of Biffa’s book Future Perfect, the US EPA are also casting their minds forward to 2020.

Beyond RCRA: Prospects for Waste & Materials Management in the Year 2020 is a discussion paper which was developed jointly by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and state environmental agencies. It aims to open and inspire dialogue on what the future could hold for the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) program in 20 years.

The paper identifies a number of trends that could affect the future of waste and materials management, resource conservation, and human and environmental health. The paper also suggests certain general strategies and tools that might be used to build a new vision for the future of the RCRA programme. While the paper is intended to stimulate thought and discussion about the future of RCRA, it is not a statement of any formal EPA or state agency policy.

Key trends to 2020

Pressures on natural resources will continue to increase

New technologies will change how resources are used and wasted

Need for more sustainable use of resources

More chemicals and new risks

Health effects of chemicals will be better understood

Methods for measuring and managing chemical risks will improve

Industry will consume and waste different types of materials

Industry will be more efficient and less wasteful

Wastes will still be with us

The information revolution will continue

Industry, individuals, and the environment will benefit

The global economy will be more highly integrated

Environmental protections will need to be more internationalized

People will have more influence in environmental decisions

The size and cultural diversity of the United States population will continue to increase,

and will affect environmental decision making


Reduce waste and increase the efficient and sustainable use of resources

Prevent exposures to humans and ecosystems from the use of hazardous


Manage wastes and clean up chemical releases in a safe, environmentally sound



Economic tools may be most effective

Informational and technical innovations may also be effective

Need for new regulatory strategies

More information could be a powerful tool

Potential for economic incentives and technical innovations

Some regulatory controls would be needed

Copies of the report (0.2MB) can be collected from the EPA’s website at:

Ano da Publicação: 2002
Fonte: Warmer Bulletin Enews #43-2002
Autor: Kit Strange, Warmer Bulletin
Email do Autor:

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