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  • September 26, 2017 7:57 AM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)

    SWANA Announces New Zero Waste Principles and Practices Course Certification


    The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and the California Resource Recovery Association (CRRA) announce the launch of their new Zero Waste Principles & Practices certification course, developed by the two organizations along with Kessler Consulting (KCI) over the past two years.


    This course will promote the integration of zero waste principles into existing management systems, practices, and policies, in order to move local systems toward developing and achieving community-specific Zero Waste goals.


    “The partnership between SWANA and CRRA reflects our commitment to managing resources and understanding that there are better ways to address resource management than disposal,” said Sara Bixby, SWANA’s Deputy Executive Director. “Our current recycling, composting, and education programs must be part of our future Zero Waste systems; the challenge is to rethink existing programs in the context of Zero Waste and to add elements that move us further toward these goals.”


    The Zero Waste Principles & Practices certification course will benefit municipal recycling and solid waste professionals, private and public sector policy makers, and sustainability advocates who are looking to write a Zero Waste plan or learn more about components to incorporate in their current program.


    “Early on, CRRA's Board recognized the importance of bringing a structured educational program to the non-profit, public, and private sector engaged in developing and bringing zero waste plans to reality,” said Rob Hilton, CRRA’s President. “CRRA's early certification program was successful in training hundreds of professionals, many of whom are now in Zero Waste careers. This partnership with SWANA allows us to reach and learn from thousands of our colleagues and industry partners across North America, and it is my sincere hope that this sharing and learning evolves the concepts of Zero Waste from a movement to an established industry."


    The Zero Waste Principles & Practices certification course contains 10 modules covering areas of public policy, programs, technology, and measurement, with lessons that include collection options, managing organics, contracts, and financing.


    “Kessler Consulting was honored to have been selected to prepare the Zero Waste Principles & Practices certification course,” said Mitch Kessler, President of Kessler Consulting. “The collaborative effort among CRRA, SWANA and the KCI project team reflects a wide array of interests, expertise and passion for this topic and that carries through in the materials.“


    The course will premiere at CRRA’s 41st Annual Conference and Tradeshow in San Diego, California from August 16-23, 2017, and is available as part of SWANA’s industry-renowned Certification Program through Training@Work, Training@HQ, and Chapter Partnering programs.


    To learn more about the Zero Waste Principles & Practices certification course, click here


  • September 05, 2017 11:49 AM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)

    The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) has submitted comments to the World Trade Organization in response to the July 18, 2017 notification from China on their intent to ban certain waste imports.


    SWANA’s comments explain what effect the proposed ban on certain categories of recyclables could have on municipal recycling in the United States and Canada, requests further clarification on the terms of the ban, and offers technical assistance to the Chinese government on waste and recycling-related matters.


    “China’s proposed import ban is a very important issue for SWANA members in the United States and Canada, and is a critical one for many of the communities they serve,” said David Biderman, SWANA Executive Director & CEO. “We need to work with the Chinese government to develop a practical timeline for the proposed ban, while improving bale quality for material exported to China and other foreign markets.”


    SWANA lays out challenges the United States will likely face in adapting to the ban, discusses recycling on the state and local levels, and the lack of domestic recycling infrastructure to process material currently being exported.


    “Because single stream recycling has become the prominent method of recycling in North America it is imperative that the quality of the sorted recycled materials be as high as possible to avoid loads being rejected,” said Rich Allen, President of SWANA. “Many Material Recovery Facilities are looking to upgrade their sorting systems to improve the quality of their bales along with better educating their residents on what can and more importantly cannot be recycled. The actual impacts on the Chinese Waste Ban are still being interpreted, but SWANA is keeping close tabs on the implications for our members and the industry.”


    SWANA supports the concerns previously filed by the International Scrap Recycling Institute (ISRI) and Waste Management, and suggests a clearly defined five year transition period for the ban in order to allow time for customers and suppliers in the United States and the global marketplace to adapt to the policy change.

    “We appreciate SWANA joining with ISRI and others to raise concerns about China’s import restrictions,” said Robin Weiner, CEO of ISRI. “We look forward to working with SWANA to support the Chinese government’s environmental protection goals.”



  • August 24, 2017 8:56 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)


    The SWANA Excellence Award recognizes outstanding solid waste programs and facilities that demonstrate the highest practices through their commitment to using effective technologies and processes in system design and operations, advancing worker and community health and safety, and implementing successful public education and outreach programs. Programs also must exhibit that they are fiscally and environmentally responsible through their compliance with all applicable federal, state and local regulations.


    This year’s awards honor programs and facilities in 13 different categories spanning many facets of the municipal solid waste industry. Award winners represent the most innovative and dynamic organizations throughout North America as judged by their peers, and SWANA is proud to recognize their accomplishments.


    “The recipients of the SWANA Excellence Awards represent the best solid waste management practices in North America today,” said David Biderman, SWANA Executive Director and CEO. “Community leaders should be very proud of the valuable contributions that these projects provide to their citizens.”


    The winners will be acknowledged and awarded at the annual WASTECON® conference in Baltimore, Maryland, on Tuesday, September 26, 2017.



    The City of Greenville Solid Waste Division-Recycling won Bronze in the category of Communication, Education and Marketing Tools.



    The complete list of awards recipients can be found here.



  • May 22, 2017 12:06 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)


    SWANA and ASTSWMO to Collaborate on Recycling, Food Waste, and Education


    Silver Spring, MD – The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and the Association of State and Territorial Solid Waste Management Officials (ASTSWMO) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that outlines their intent to conduct various collaborative efforts on topics of mutual interest.


    SWANA and ASTSWMO will initially focus on recycling, food waste, and education, and intend to develop strategies that provide reciprocal awareness of each association within the other association’s membership.


    “SWANA is pleased to enter into this collaborative arrangement with ASTSWMO, which will strengthen both associations,” said David Biderman, SWANA’s Executive Director and CEO. “By combining SWANA’s strength at the local level with ASTSWMO’s members at the state and territorial levels, we can more effectively work to serve our members with education and information on a variety of issues, with an initial focus on recycling and food waste.”


    “ASTSWMO looks forward to our partnership with SWANA, aligning our shared vision and communicating our mutual goals,” said Dania Rodriguez, ASTSWMO’s Executive Director. “Recycling is fundamental to ASTSWMO’s mission, and we hope to increase awareness among our membership as we collaborate on how to reduce food waste, which accounts for 37% of the nation’s landfill capacity. The ASTSWMO Board of Directors is pleased to enter into this MOU with SWANA.”


  • May 22, 2017 12:04 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)

    SWANA Publishes New Tips for Safety at MRFs


    "Five to Stay Alive" Safety Resources are growing with SWANA's Safety Program


    Silver Spring, MD – Supporting the Solid Waste Association of North America's (SWANA) goal of promoting safety within the solid waste industry, SWANA has developed a new installment to its “Five to Stay Alive” series that features safety tips for Material Recovery Facility (MRF) employees.


    The number of MRF worker fatalities increased over the previous year, and the multitude of injury hazards at recycling facilities remain high. The complex and fast-paced environment of a modern MRF requires well-trained and educated employees and employers.


    The “Five to Stay Alive” safety campaign includes flyers and posters that provide a useful set of guidelines for employees to follow in order to reduce accidents and injuries on the job.

    “The safety performance of the waste industry is not acceptable, and at least two MRF workers were killed earlier this year” stated David Biderman, SWANA’s Executive Director and CEO. “With volatile commodity prices, we urge companies and local governments to not reduce their focus on worker safety. SWANA will continue to provide useful safety resources and training to public and private sector employers and employees in both the United States and Canada. Nothing we do is more important.”


    SWANA encourages waste industry professionals to use this tool, in addition to its other safety resources, to continue efforts in creating a positive workplace safety culture, in order to move the solid-waste industry off of the federal government’s list of most dangerous jobs.


    “Our industry is relying more and more on MRFs to remove materials from the waste stream, which makes this new “Five to Stay Alive” installment particularly relevant,” said Tom Parker, SWANA’s Safety Committee Chair. “It is imperative that we work safely every minute of every day, and integrating these five basic principles at MRFs can help us achieve this goal.”


    “Five to Stay Alive” resources are available for download on the SWANA website for easy sharing in promoting safety to colleagues and other industry professionals. The Spanish version will be available in June.


    To learn more about SWANA’s award-winning safety program, please visit swana.org/safety


  • May 18, 2017 7:51 AM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)


    SWANA’s MentorMatch is the perfect place to pair up experienced professionals willing to share their expertise with colleagues, young professionals, and students looking for guidance or information to help advance their careers in the solid waste management and recycling industry. This program allows both Mentors and Mentees to grow professionally and personally through each 6-month interaction with other SWANA members.


    Read more under the MentorMatch tab in your MySWANA account also found at community.swana.org/mentoring and enroll today!


    * Enroll before May 28th for a special MentorMatch webinar training (live and recorded versions).


  • May 16, 2017 10:05 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)

    The SC Chapter is hosting "Managing MSW Collections Systems" Certification Training and testing November 7 - 9, 2017 in Surfside Beach, SC.


    Member Rate: $599

    Non-Member Rate: $999


    Additional info and room rates will be available soon.



    If your interested, please email us.


    Registration will open in September 2017.

  • May 16, 2017 10:01 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)


    The SC Palmetto Chapter is sponsoring a SC state wide safety day on September 12, 2017. The Chapter will provide all landfills in SC with safety information.


    More info to come.

  • March 14, 2017 1:42 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)

    The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) and the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) announced today the development of a briefing for elected officials on emerging waste management technology. This brief, entitled “Effective Responses to Emerging Waste Management Technology Proposals,” was developed to provide municipal leaders with the process and resources necessary to make informed decisions when considering unsolicited proposals, unfamiliar technologies or both.

    The brief includes a checklist....


    Continue reading here.

  • March 14, 2017 1:40 PM | Philip Westmoreland (Administrator)


    As part of on-going efforts to get solid waste workers off the Federal Government’s “Top 5 Most Dangerous Jobs” list, the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) will resume distributing Slow Down to Get Around (SDTGA) decals to its members, free, upon request, starting March 14, 2017.


    Continue reading here.

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