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Author Archives: Colin Staub

About Colin Staub

Colin-StaubColin Staub has been a reporter at Resource Recycling since January 2017. Before that he worked as a reporter at the weekly newspaper in Newberg, Oregon, and has been a freelance writer at other publications in Portland. He can be contacted at [email protected]

Facility Focus: PreZero

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Exterior of PreZero facility in Riverside, Calif.

In early June, PreZero started the commissioning process at its plant near Riverside, Calif., running test loads of LDPE and LLDPE recovered film and producing pellets.

A company planning multiple U.S. processing plants taking in hard-to-recycle plastics has begun operating its first location in Southern California.

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COVID-19 demand shift opens door for recycled fiber

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Stacks of baled paper for recycling.

A collapsing market for printing and writing papers has led to a few mill conversions. | Siwakorn1933/Shutterstock

Nine Dragons is shifting toward recycled packaging at a U.S. mill, citing an “unprecedented” decline in demand for printing and writing paper. The company is just one of several paper producers responding to changing markets with mill conversions.

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Sort project will target plastics missed by MRFs in Northeast

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Baled plastics for soration.

Bales of plastic material for sortation at the Pacific Northwest demonstration facility. | Jared Paben/Resource Recycling, Inc.

Following a similar demonstration in the Pacific Northwest last year, industry stakeholders are launching an initiative to recover additional material from the municipal stream in New York and four other states.

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EPA: Waste generation far outpaced recycling in 2018

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Residential waste and recycling bins on a curb.

Recently released data shows that a major increase in MSW generation outpaced modest recycling progress. | Colleen Michaels/Shutterstock

The U.S. recycling and composting rate took a significant dive in 2018, falling from 35% to 32%, according to new figures from the federal government. The drop was partially due to a change in how the rate was calculated.

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Major packaging users hit 6.2% average recycled content

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Walmart store's dairy shelf.

Walmart grew its recycled plastic use across product packaging lines from less than 0.5% in 2018 to 9% in 2019. | Chekyravaa/Shutterstock

Some of the largest packaged goods and retail firms increased their use of recycled plastic in 2019, but they have work to do to hit 2025 targets, according to an Ellen MacArthur Foundation update.

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Another Asian country bans imports of mixed paper

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Ship docked at the Phy My port in Vietnam.

Vietnamese imports of U.S. mixed paper dropped to 74,000 short tons in 2018, then to 45,000 in 2019. | Domicile Media/Shutterstock

Vietnam, a relatively small market for U.S. mixed paper, will no longer allow imports of the material beginning in 2022. The restriction does not appear to affect OCC, which the U.S. ships to Vietnam in far greater quantities.

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Big drop in California redemption rate? State and group don’t agree

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Empty aluminum beverage cans arranged in rows.

CalRecycle plans to release final redemption data for the first six months of 2020 in the coming weeks. | anmbph/Shutterstock

This story has been updated with new redemption figures from California’s recycling agency.

Advocacy organization Consumer Watchdog recently noted the COVID-19 pandemic has slashed California’s beverage container recycling rate. But the state’s recycling agency called that analysis “inaccurate.”

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WM highlights recycling activities during tumultuous year

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Waste Management fleet of trucks from above.

In 2019, Waste Management processed a record amount of recyclables: 15.5 million tons, up from 15.2 million tons in 2018. | Courtesy of Waste Management.

The largest hauler in North America processed a record amount of recyclables in 2019, and it invested more than $100 million to improve its recycling infrastructure, according to its latest sustainability report.

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