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Special Reports and Interactive Features

Our newsroom provides new insight and analysis every week on the recycling industry, but some stories have ongoing relevance. Here, we’ve compiled a selection of special reports and long-read features, articles worth returning to time and again because they are regularly updated or have lasting importance. Be sure to bookmark this page to see the latest on these major issues and trends.

Coronavirus impacts on the recycling industry

By Editorial Staff

In March 2020 Resource Recycling began keeping track of how the novel coronavirus was affecting the business of materials recovery and processing. Here you’ll find all of our in-depth reporting and analysis on the topic through Nov. 2021.

Coronavirus image.

From Green Fence to red alert: A China timeline

By Editorial Staff

Starting in late 2017, one international issue spent several years at the forefront of North American recycling conversations: China’s ban on the import of certain recovered materials. To help stakeholders get a firm grasp on the Chinese import policies, we created a timeline of events related to the market phenomenon, regularly updating it through 2021.

China import ban

Heavy lifting

By Dan Leif

Weight-based recycling targets are being downplayed by industry players who want to more effectively frame the overall impact of waste diversion decisions. But finding suitable metrics to replace current standards won’t be easy.

How recycling robots have spread across North America

By Jared Paben

Over just a few years, robotic sorting has gone from a gee-whiz laboratory curiosity to a key technology in a number of different types of facilities.

A robotic sorting machine at work.

Recycling sector grapples with plastic realities

By Dan Leif

Should some types of single-use plastic be banned? Or is infrastructure improvement a better answer to current plastic waste concerns? A varied group of industry leaders tackled those questions on stage at the 2019 Resource Recycling Conference and Trade Show.

Here is away

Photography and story by Stiv Wilson

A photographic look at how contamination in paper bales is contributing to the problem of plastics management in Southeast Asia.

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