Packaging costs NYC taxpayers $600 million

It’s interesting to read about what Americans know or think is happening in Canada with respect to product stewardship or extended producer responsibility (EPR). This online article by Bill Sheehan, Executive Director of UPSTREAM (formerly the Product Policy Institute) recently published an article about the estimated cost to taxpayers in New York City of recycling

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Modern wastefulness was deliberately designed by industry

A July 9, 2014 article from the Discard Studies Blog caught my attention, thanks to it being forwarded to me by the folks at UPSTREAM (http://upstreampolicy.org). The article deserves reading by anyone in the waste management industry, and especially people crafting policy for extended producer responsiblity (EPR). It makes the point (and walks the reader how

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A case of shameless self-promotion

If you want to find out more about paper packaging and the environment then set aside the morning of November 12 in Brampton, Ontario. There you will be treated to a frank State-of- the-Nation address by the executive director of the industry’s environmental council. This normally shy and diplomatic individual (who wrote this stuff?) will

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The Race to the Bottom Part 2 – Death of a Recycler

Is there a greater tragedy imaginable than that, in our endeavour consciously to shape our future in accordance with high ideals, we should in fact unwittingly produce the very opposite of what we have been striving for?  ― Friedrich August von Hayek Sims Recycling Solutions – the world’s largest e-waste recycler – has announced that it

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Messing with the term “Zero Waste”

Words have power, as propagandists have known for a very long time. If you can get people thinking in certain terms via the use of certain words, public policy can move successfully in a direction of your choosing, and not against your goals. And best of all, people might not even think they had another

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Upstream misses the boat – part 2

There are two things that bug us about the recent packaging campaign launched by US-based environmental group, Upstream: its misleading use of data (outlined in an earlier blog) and its superficial and one-sided view of how the paper packaging industries in both Canada and the United States work. Basically what Upstream claims is that all

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The Race to the Bottom – Part 1

On May 29th 2014 I gave a talk at the Recycling Council of BC’s Zero Waste Conference (which can be downloaded here) about ensuring efficiency and effectiveness under Extended Producer Responsibility. In that presentation I advance the idea that the designation of a given product or material for EPR creates a new system of exchange between

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Improving your industry news — we welcome your comments & feedback

Times are a-changing, but for the better. As of today, I’m taking on a more dedicated role with HAZMATMAG.COM and its sister site SOLIDWASTEMAG.COM. What does that mean for you? Well, it means better quality content and more up-to-date news, more photos, and even more event info too. Nice, right? As we continue to improve, our hope is

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Feds go green with electronics procurement

I thought readers might be interested in the following news related to cost internalization in electronic and electrical equipment (EEE) procurement. Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC) has made cost internalization of EPR program EHF/eco-fees for AV equipment a requirement in bids submitted to the federal government. This is a new policy which will doubtless

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Upstream misses the boat

There’s no question that the folks at the US-based environmental group, Upstream, have their hearts in the right place. We just wish they would get all of their facts straight. The group recently launched a wide-ranging campaign against packaging waste, including a section on what it calls paper-based “consumer” packaging. Upstream defines this as pretty

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