ResourceRecycling.com RSS Feeds

Creative Recycling Systems enters bankruptcy

E-Scrap News Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 21:51
Creative Recycling Systems enters bankruptcy

By Bobby Elliott, E-Scrap News

Sept. 4, 2014

With a multimillion dollar lawsuit on its plate, Creative Recycling Systems has entered into bankruptcy and decided to close or sell all of its e-scrap locations.

After an extensive review of Creative's holdings, the company's receiver, Robert Swett, determined that the only potentially profitable — and sellable — operations were in Florida and North Carolina. The company has operated an e-scrap processing facilities in each of those states.

A separate office building in Florida has also been identified as an asset to package with the others in a potential sale, Jay Verona, Swett's legal counsel, told E-Scrap News.

The company's remaining processing facility, located in Palmetto, Georgia, and numerous other storage and office sites have already been or will be closed, Verona confirmed.

"As for the rest of the leases, we've filed motions to reject those leases," Verona said.

The company's filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy was approved by a Florida bankruptcy court judge Sept. 3, court documents show.

Verona could not provide an estimate of how many jobs will be lost as a result of the anticipated closings.  Creative had been dual-certified to both the e-Stewards and R2 standards.

A loan of $1 million has also been requested from the plaintiff in the case, Regions Bank, to "operate the company in the short term along with the other revenues that the company generates," Verona explained. Regions Bank is suing Creative and related affiliates for $18.7 million. Swett was appointed a receiver for the company in July.

Swett has not been available to discuss what each inventory revealed or how much material the company has amassed — and will need to process. One former Creative employee, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said the company has more than 5,000 tons of CRT glass it will need to manage.

Rumors of uncertainty surrounding Creative's future have swirled ever since the Regions Bank lawsuit emerged and plans to layoff 74 employees in Florida followed. In recent weeks E-Scrap News has reached out to officials in every state where Creative has had a location, with numerous sources noting interruptions in service but few having a clear sense of whether or not the company would continue operating.

In North Carolina, a state where Swett thinks Creative might still have attractive assets, service disruptions have been going on for more than a year, Rob Taylor, who heads the Local Government Assistance Team at the North Carolina Department of the Environment and Natural Resources, told E-Scrap News. After abruptly opting out of most municipal collection programs last year, Creative held on to contracts in Mecklenburg County, Wake County and Moore County as well as with the city of Durham.

But this summer, service to those clients was also cut off, Taylor said, leaving a backlog of material to be cleaned up and a handful of important municipalities scrambling to identify new partners.

As for the reason, Taylor ventured an educated guess that Creative was outbidding its competitors in North Carolina — namely Electronic Recyclers International, Synergy and E-Cycle Secure — by putting in the lowest bids to OEMs required to fund recycling efforts in the state and then even offering municipalities money for their CRT-dominated e-scrap stream.

"Their offer was always an orange in a basket of apples," Taylor said. "Maybe they were hoping there'd be a better quality stream with less CRTs."

Meanwhile state officials up and down the East Coast, Creative's primary swath of business, have had a hard time reaching the company, especially in states where service has appeared to stop altogether. "I am concerned since the state’s primary contact has not responded to my requests for information to-date," one official wrote just days before the company filed for bankruptcy.

To return to the E-Scrap News newsletter, click here

 

CRT processor gets key green light

E-Scrap News Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 21:45
CRT processor gets key green light

By Bobby Elliott, E-Scrap News

Sept. 4, 2014

With an air pollution permit in place for a New York operation, a U.K.-based CRT glass recycling firm says it's bringing its smelting technology to the U.S.

Representatives from Nulife Glass, led by Simon Greer, informed E-Scrap News earlier this week the company has received final approval from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation to build and operate a leaded glass smelting furnace at a facility in Dunkirk, New York.

That furnace, which has been in operation in the U.K., will be Nulife's first in the U.S. and the company says it has plans to expand beyond New York.

"Nulife Glass is presently in negotiations for additional sites for processing and melting glass in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Ohio," Greer told E-Scrap News. "The only restriction on Nulife's processing capacity will be the speed at which it can open new sites and that is only restricted by the rate at which suppliers can deliver glass."

As for supplying the site in New York, Greer said, "Key stakeholders in the supply chain managed, controlled and audited by the manufacturers, government and inspection organizations" have indicated they will have ample glass to get the Nulife operation going. The company website suggests the furnace "will have the capacity to process more than 200 million pounds [100,000 tons] of CRT glass." The site does not say whether that figure is an annual capacity.

Any additional processing capacity would provide help for firms looking for CRT recycling outlets. While estimates vary widely, somewhere between 200,000 and 400,000 tons of glass enters the U.S. waste stream each year while actual maximum processing capacity, including international options, hovers around 200,000 tons.

To return to the E-Scrap News newsletter, click here

 

Certification scorecard

E-Scrap News Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 21:41
Certification scorecard

Sept. 4, 2014

With the roster of companies attaining third-party certifications or audits continuing to grow, E-Scrap News has compiled a roundup of the firms announcing certification this past week.

Merit ePartners, a nonprofit corporation located in Stockton, California is now certified to the following standards: e-Stewards, ISO 9001, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and R2:2013. The group offers job training and services for incarcerated youth.

Bayaud Enterprises of Denver; Goodwill Data SHIELD of Milwaukee; H & R Contractors, Inc. of Staunton, Virginia; Paper Dragon of Grand Island, Nebraska; Proshred Security of Richmond, Virginia; recordSHRED, Inc of Oakland Park, Florida; SecurShred of South Burlington, Vermont; Shred-Ex, LLC of Colchester, Vermont; and United Document Destruction and Storage of Reading, Pennsylvania have either achieved or renewed their NAID Certifications for Physical Destruction of Hard Drives.

E-Scrap News has added OHSAS 18001 and NAID AAA into its certification directory, as well as moved the directory online. If your firm recently completed these certifications, a CHWMEG audit or an ISO 9001, ISO 14001, R2, RIOS or e-Stewards certification, e-mail dleif@resource-recycling.com to be included in this section and in E-Scrap News' directory. The full directory is available at www.tinyurl.com/Certified-E-scrap.

To return to the E-Scrap News newsletter, click here

E-Scrap 2014: Form factor guidance

E-Scrap News Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 21:36
E-Scrap 2014: Form factor guidance

By Editorial Staff, E-Scrap News

Sept. 4, 2014

As gadgets have transitioned from our desks to our laps to our hands, processors and refurbishers have had to deal with new challenges to effectively dismantle or repair.

At E-Scrap 2014, an intriguing session will help attendees better understand how form factor changes are having an impact on the used electronics sector. Presenters will also offer potential solutions in product design and repairability.

This form factor discussion is just one of many platforms the conference offers attendees who want to better understand where our industry is headed and how to most effectively navigate a landscape riddled with both challenges and opportunities. Book your spot today and ensure your firm’s long-term competitive edge.

E-Scrap 2014 will be held Oct. 21-23 at Orlando's Rosen Shingle Creek. The 2013 edition saw more than 1,300 attendees and 125 exhibiting companies. Get all the latest information at e-scrapconference.com.


To return to the E-Scrap News newsletter, click here

NewsBits

E-Scrap News Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 21:30
NewsBits

Sept. 4, 2014

Ever wonder what your gently used iPhone 5 could get you on the trade-in market? A quick internet search shows a mint condition, 64GB iPhone 5 on Verizon could bring in as much as $160 from ecoATM, $180-190 from Gazelle or $225 in trade-in credits from Apple.

Speaking of trade-ins, ecoATM, the kiosk-based, automated service, announced it has collected 3 million devices since its launch in 2008. That total has been reached in large part thanks to a busy 2014, which has seen 1 million devices processed, the majority of which, the company reports, are the iPhone 4 and 4S.

UNICOR, the federal penitentiary jobs operation, operates seven e-scrap processing plants nationwide. Prisoners working for the quasi-public firm handled 39 million pounds of electronics in 2013, the latest annual data shows.

Reuse pioneer Close the Gap has officially marked its 10-year anniversary with the release of its 2013 annual report detailing the group's efforts and impact to date. Since 2003, 326 European companies have donated almost 400,000 "computer assets," which Close the Gap has used to drive nearly 400 projects in 54 countries. The group says approximately 1.5 million people have been affected by those projects, many of which center on reusing valuable computer equipment and thus "bridging the digital divide."

To return to the E-Scrap News newsletter, click here

 

California passes historic bag ban

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 11:02
California passes historic bag ban

By Bobby Elliott, Resource Recycling

Sept. 3, 2014

California has become the first state in the nation to ban plastic checkout bags from grocery and convenience stores.

The bill, SB 270, was passed last Friday by a vote of 22-15 in the state Senate. It now heads to the desk of Gov. Jerry Brown, who has until Sept. 30 to sign the bill into law.

If signed, as some local reports suggest will happen, SB 270 will ban plastic, "single-use" bags offered at grocery and convenience stores throughout the state wand would install a minimum 10-cent fee on reusable, compostable and paper bags. The bill, authored by Sen. Alex Padilla, also allocates $2 million from a state recycling loan fund to provide plastic bag companies capital loans to transition into the reusable bag manufacturing market.

With the 2014 legislative session coming to an end Aug. 31, the pressure was on for ban advocates to pass the bill through both the Assembly and Senate. After the Assembly initially shot down the measure, bill lobbyists and advocates pushed successfully for a revote. That revote proved successful, and the bill moved on to the Senate.

Bag ban supporters pushed for similar bans in 2010 and 2013, but both times failed to garner enough backing from the state legislature — the efforts faced tremendous opposition from plastic bag makers and the paper bag industry.

"The advancement of SB 270 is a perfect example of why California citizens are disgusted by their state legislature," Lee Califf, executive director of the American Progressive Bag Alliance, said in a statement. "SB 270 threatens thousands of California manufacturing jobs, hurts the environment by mandating the distribution of thicker plastic bags, and directs all fees collected into the pockets of grocers and their union partners."

"We urge Governor Brown to look closely at the terrible consequences of this legislation and veto it," Califf continued in the statement.

From 2007, when San Francisco passed its bag ban measure to the beginning of 2014, more than 100 local bag ban ordinances had been passed in the Golden State.

As part of the bill, local ordinances already passed will remain intact and in effect, while the state law will target the remaining two thirds of California's population without a ban in place.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

 

Resource Recycling Conference 2014: The Closed Loop Fund

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:59
Resource Recycling Conference 2014: The Closed Loop Fund

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

Sept. 3, 2014

The groundbreaking Closed Loop Fund is headlined by Walmart and aims to invest $100 million in recycling infrastructure projects. The goal is to spur private and public funding for transforming the recycling system in the U.S.

Ron Gonen, RecycleBank founder and former New York City recycling czar, is a co-founder and CEO of the Fund, and he'll take the stage at the upcoming Resource Recycling Conference to talk about the Fund's big plans.

In his presentation, Gonen will elaborate on how the Fund hopes to drive recycling to the next level through innovative financing models, explain why infrastructure and scale are necessary to make projects economically feasible, and explore in-depth the link between demand, markets, recycled content and consumer behavior.

Resource Recycling Conference 2014 is taking place at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside Sept. 15-17. Head to rrconference.com for more information.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

Waste Management announces cuts

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:57
Waste Management announces cuts

By Bobby Elliott, Resource Recycling

Sept. 3, 2014

Waste Management has initiated a "voluntary staff reduction plan" and sources say the move will not spare the company's recycling wing.

The country's largest waste and recycling company notified staff of the plans in a letter dated Aug. 22, stating severance packages would be made available to those employees who choose to leave the company.

Toni Beck, WM's lead company spokesperson, said the move was part reorganization at the publicly traded firm.

"This realignment is focused on ensuring our corporate functions are clearly aligned with the strategic priorities of the company," Beck said in a statement sent to Resource Recycling. "Unfortunately, this realignment means some positions will be eliminated, so we are being as fair as we can be and offering employees in the corporate functions an enhanced separation package to voluntarily leave the company."

While Beck said division-specific impacts were not yet known, sources have indicated that the recycling division at Waste Management will be reshuffled as a result of the cuts.

Little is known as to the extent of the cuts or when they are likely to occur. The Houston-based firm made a similar announcement in 2012, and approximately 800 jobs were cut, according to reporting by the Houston Business Journal.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

Houston leader says dirty MRF not definite

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:54
Houston leader says dirty MRF not definite

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

Sept. 3, 2014

Houston may not ultimately implement its controversial One Bin for All system, a plan that calls for residents to toss garbage and recyclables in a single curbside cart for later sortation.

Speaking on a panel at last week's WasteCon conference in Grapevine, Texas, Houston's director of solid waste said the city remains "in the midst of evaluation," and he said Houston continues to move forward on a separate, single-stream recycling collection rollout that would be bolstered if the city decides to table the one-bin approach.

"We know the technology is out there [for one-bin sorting], and we know there are concerns in the market about the quality of the material," said Harry Hayes, Houston's chief operating officer and solid waste chief. "That is going to play into the decision. If it's one-bin or advancing single-stream, we will grow recycling in Houston."

Houston's consideration of a one-bin system has grabbed the attention of many industry members over the last two years. If such a plan does become a reality, Houston will be by far the largest municipality in North America to adopt the all-in-one strategy and would follow in the footsteps of Indianapolis and Montgomery, Alabama.

Houston is the nation's fourth largest city, and Hayes said the city provides solid waste service to 423,000 households.

In March of 2013, Houston was awarded $1 million from the Bloomberg Development Mayors Challenge to move ahead on the one-bin initiative, which would necessitate a materials recovery facility that can separate recyclable materials from waste. Such facilities are sometimes called dirty MRFs.

In July of this year, the city announced it had closed a request for proposals period for One Bin for All and noted it had received five bids from entities interested in helming the program.

In his remarks last week, however, Hayes said the city is not obligated to choose any of the proposals, and he said he and his staff see themselves as general investigators of the feasibility and economic viability of the single-bin approach. The knowledge they glean in the process, he said, could be shared with other municipalities mulling their own options.

"Whether our city goes to one-bin or not, we will put together the key decision points everyone else will use," he said. "There's an unbelievable amount of work we've done. The bedrock will be there for all solid waste systems around the country."

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

 

Madison shelves anaerobic digester plan

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:51
Madison shelves anaerobic digester plan

By Bobby Elliott, Resource Recycling

Sept. 3, 2014

Madison, Wisconsin has put a halt on an initiative to bring food scrap collection to all city residents.

Since 2011, a food scrap collection pilot project has serviced 500 homes and six businesses in Madison, and the plan was to gradually expand the program as the city built an anaerobic digester to eventually service all of Madison. But Mayor Paul Soglin recently decided the digester was too costly to focus on this year, with other competing items taking a front seat.

"The mayor has decided he will delay the program at least a year," George Dreckmann, the city's recycling coordinator, said. "In our conversations during our budget discussions he indicated that he did not think we could afford building a digester for the next five years unless there was some money from other sources."

While contamination issues arose during the pilot program, Dreckmann said the mayor's decision was "strictly financial" and that initial food composting in Madison "showed this is going to work."

With construction set aside for an indefinite period of time, the city has also decided to halt its pilot program at the end of this month. The program had fed a digester in Oshkosh, Wisconsin since 2011 and was in line for an additional investment and expansion this year.

Initial work on building a digester was set to begin in 2015, with construction of the facility commencing in 2016 and citywide service starting sometime in 2017.

The city will continue to run a separate collection program for yard debris and leaves.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

 

Grant watch

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:48
Grant watch

Sept. 3, 2014

Thanks to a $213,606 grant from the Alabama Department of Environmental Management, residents of Tuscaloosa, Alabama will be able to recycle glass curbside starting next year. Adding a glass shredder at the local recycling plant has been high on the city's list of recycling priorities for almost 15 years, so when the 2014 grant came through, a good chunk of it was used to fund the equipment upgrade. Previously all glass went to landfill due to the distance between Tuscaloosa and the nearest glass recycling plant.

The New York State Association for Reduction, Reuse and Recycling has announced 2014 grants of up to $1,000 for local college and university recycling efforts in New York state. The application deadline is Oct. 3, and grants are available for projects aimed at "initiating, improving, or expanding source reduction, reuse, or recycling programs on campus," a press release states. It is the second consecutive year the grants have been given out by the association.

Morehead State University has been awarded a 2014 Coca-Cola/Keep America Beautiful Recycling Bin Grant. The grant will go toward outfitting all collegiate athletic facilities on Morehead's campus with 25 recycling bins. It is the ninth year Coca-Cola and KAB have collaborated on the bin grant program — this year alone will see 4,500 bins installed on campuses throughout the country.

For more information on these or any patents, please consult the U.S. Patent Office database online.

Copies of patents can be ordered by number for $3 each from the Commissioner of Patents and Trademarks, P.O. Box 1450, Alexandria, VA, 22313-1450.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

2014 Recycling Innovators Forum: Judges announced

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:45
2014 Recycling Innovators Forum: Judges announced

By Editorial Staff, Resource Recycling

Sept. 3, 2014

The slate of judges has been finalized for the second annual Recycling Innovators Forum, which will be co-located with the Resource Recycling Conference in New Orleans in less than two weeks.

All judges for this year's forum have deep ties to the recycling industry, and they will be responsible for deciding which two bright ideas will be awarded a combined $40,000 in funding. The judges will hear eight presentations total in the final round of the competition, which is open to the public and will be held Sept. 15 at 1:00 p.m.

The following experts will make up the judging panel: Robert Bylone, Pennsylvania Recycling Markets Center; Stacy Katz, Waste Management; Norm Lisson, Coca-Cola Recycling; Scott Mouw, North Carolina Division of Environmental Assistance and Customer Service; Will Sagar, Southeast Recycling Development Council; and Jon Stephens, Avangard Innovative.

The 2014 Recycling Innovators Forum will take place the afternoon of Monday, Sept. 15 at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside during the first day of the Resource Recycling Conference. The event is free and open to the public and will be followed by a reception where judges and Innovators Forum presenters will be on hand to answer questions and develop industry contacts.

To learn more and register for the Forum, click here.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

 

NewsBits

Resource Recycling Magazine - Wed, 09/03/2014 - 10:39
NewsBits

Sept. 3, 2014

Officials in St. Paul, Minnesota appear determined to hear bids next year from firms and groups interestested in taking over city's trash and single-stream recycling program. St. Paul has been at a a standstill with longtime service provider Eureka Recycling in recent months due to stagnant recycling rates and, according to the city, significant residential fee increases. For its part, Eureka says its latest offer was far more reasonable than the city has been willing to admit.

Research from the National Center for Atmospheric Research suggests that more than 40 percent of the world's trash is burned each year. That approach to waste management, research authors say, is causing the release of a emissions significantly contributing to climate change, with past emissions estimates falling 10 to 40 percent shy of reality.

The industry-backed Carton Council has released a new study on the impact of recycling policies on driving recycling rates nationwide. Taking a look at three basic approaches — recycling policies, disposal bans and pay-as-you-throw service fees — the group found that the best approach varies by community, with each approach proving valuable when employed properly and well-matched with a given area and population.

To return to the Resource Recycling newsletter, click here

.

.