US EPA seeks to boost recycling

The US administration have launched a campaign to boost recycling. The initiative, which also aims to slash the generation of toxic chemicals, was announced by the US EPA at the National Recycling Coalition’s 21st Annual Congress and Exposition in Austin, Texas. The EPA wants to boost nationwide recycling of items like these glass bottles and jars from 30 per cent to 35 per cent by 2005.

The EPA’s Resource Conservation Challenge aims to meet or beat two goals by 2005: boosting the national recycling rate from 30 per cent to at least 35 per cent and curbing by 50 per cent the generation of 30 harmful chemicals found in hazardous waste. To help meet the goals of the Challenge, the agency also announced 12 new projects that will test creative approaches to waste minimisation, energy recovery, recycling and land revitalization.

The Resource Conservation Challenge includes 68 projects that the EPA selected for their flexibility, innovation and emphasis on public-private partnerships. All of the projects aim to reduce the use of raw materials, re-use waste materials to make new products or generate energy, and cut the generation of toxic wastes.

The five founding members of the partnership are American Video Glass, Corning Asahi, Dow Chemical Corp., International Truck and Engine, and Toyota Motor Manufacturing. The EPA plans to establish partnerships and alliances with industry, states and environmental groups to help meet the Challenge’s goals. The agency will provide training, tools and technology assistance for businesses, governments and citizen groups, and help get information about the initiative to the general population, particularly youth and minority groups, through outreach and assistance.

The initial 12 projects demonstrate approaches to waste minimisation, energy recovery, recycling and land revitalization that may be replicated across various industries, communities and regions. The projects range from making plastics from plant materials, to demonstrating the reuse potential of recycling residential building materials.

For example, one project will develop and solicit designs for reusable packaging for products purchased through the Internet. Two projects will look at ways to re-use existing wood products (eg converting used wood pallets into new flooring products).

The University of Florida’s Center for Construction and Environment will take apart a typical wood framed house, and design ways to re-use its materials in new neighbourhood building projects. The EPA estimates that about 136 million tons of building related construction and demolition wastes are generated in the US every year, of which 92 per cent comes from renovations and demolition projects.

More information about these and other waste reduction projects is available at:

More information about the Resource Conservation Challenge is available at:

Ano da Publicação: 2002
Fonte: Warmer Bulletin Enews #33-2002
Autor: Kit Strange - Editor, Warmer Bulletin
Email do Autor:

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