Every November 15, people come together to celebrate America Recycles Day and focus on the value created by recycling. The benefits, including the industry’s $110 billion economic impact, more than 531,000 jobs created, and reduction in greenhouse gases are numerous. The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), the Voice of the Recycling Industry™, is using this year’s America Recycles Day as an opportunity to not only recognize the achievements of the industry and it workers, but also to identify new ways of increasing the success of the industry and important role it plays in society.
“Recycling is an innovative industry, constantly developing new markets around the globe, and making advancements to allow more items into the recycling stream,” said Robin Wiener, president of ISRI. “As we celebrate the achievements in recycling today, this is also a time to issue a call to action. As an industry, we encourage manufacturers to design more products with recycling in mind from the very beginning conceptual stages. And as consumers we need make more of an effort to buy products with recycled content. Together this will help increase the demand for recycled material.”
Design for Recycling®, an ISRI priority, encourages manufacturers to consider recyclability during product design, in the same manner they consider cost, safety, and other factors.
Products designed with recyclability in mind:
- Are easily recycled through current or newly designed recycling processes and procedures;
- Are cost effective to recycle whereby the cost to recycle does not exceed the value of their recycled materials;
- Are free of hazardous and other materials that impede the recycling process;
- Maximize the use of recycled materials and/or components within product manufacturing; and
- Have a net gain in the overall recyclability of the product while reducing its overall negative impact on the environment.
The day culminates with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hosting an America Recycles Summit for industry stakeholders, including ISRI. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler will preside, as working groups on education & outreach, infrastructure, market development, and measurement report on accomplishments towards improving the recycling sector in the United States.
“ISRI welcomes the opportunity to once again join the EPA and other stakeholders as we continue to take concrete actions to benefit the recycling industry as a whole,” concluded Wiener. “We look forward to advancing the conversation surrounding the vital areas of education & outreach, infrastructure, market development, and measurement around the industry.”