Glass bottles piled for recycling.

The state of New York will provide funding to create a Center for Glass Innovation. | Torychemistry/Shutterstock

A government grant will support a collaborative project to bolster end markets for recycled glass and improve the quality of the glass stream throughout New York.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Jan. 22 announced the collaboration, through which the state will provide $1.7 million to the State University of New York (SUNY). The money will flow to SUNY’s New York State College of Ceramics – located at the private Alfred University in Alfred, N.Y. – which will create a Center for Glass Innovation.

“Recycling markets continue to experience volatility,” a press release from Cuomo’s office stated. “As a result, recycling operations are struggling to find suitable markets for material, impacting local solid waste recycling efforts. Glass is the heaviest component of the municipal waste stream and costly to process.”

The glass center is designed to be a “research resource for glass producers” in New York and, eventually, nationally, according to the release.

“The center will create space for basic and applied research, user facilities, and experimental glass tanks for applied, industrial-scale research, with an emphasis on creating higher value end markets for curbside collected glass,” the announcement stated. “This will be the first center of its kind in the United States where glass companies will be able to test small batches of new glass compositions in a pilot production environment.”

The project partners noted that the research center’s location in Alfred, N.Y. places it in a region that’s relatively dense with glass operations, including Anchor Glass, Corning Inc., Guardian Glass and more.

The money is being distributed through the New York Environmental Protection Fund as part of a three-year agreement, according to the release. Additional project partners include Owens-Illinois, the Glass Manufacturing Industry Council and others.

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