August 2016 
In This Issue
Upcoming Events
Waste Reduction, Reuse, and Recycling in NYS 2016 Tour Series
Albany, NY
August 12, 2016
Waste Reduction, Reuse, and Recycling in NYS 2016 Tour Series
Buffalo, NY
August 25, 2016
Annual NRC Members Meeting in Conjunction with Resource Recycling Annual Conference
New Orleans, LA
August 30-September 1, 2016
19th Annual Missouri Recycling Coalition
St. Louis, MO
September 12 - 14
Georgia Recycling Coalition Annual Conference
Saint Simons Island, GA
September 18 - 21, 2016
Arkansas Recycling Coalition Annual Conference 
Eureka Springs, AK
September 20, 2016
More Information
New Mexico Recycling & Solid Waste Conference
Albuquerque, NM
September 26 - 28, 2016
Iowa Recycling & Solid Waste Management Conference
Davenport, IA
October 3 - 5, 2016
21st Annual RAM/SWANA Conference & Show
Minneapolis, MN
October 5 - 6, 2016
State of Texas Alliance for Recyclers Annual Summit
San Antonio, TX
October 16-18, 2016
More Information
Please Note

All communication, payables and/or receivables should be mailed to the following address ONLY:


National Recycling Coalition, Inc.

1220 L Street NW, Suite 100-155

Washington DC 20005

2015-2016 NRC Board
Stephen Bantillo, NRC Vice President and NRC Policy Committee Co-Chair
Recycling Certification Institute

Gary Bilbro, NRC Vice President, NRC Fund Development Co-Chair and NRC Recycling Jobs Task Force Co-Chair 
SMART Recycling, Inc.
North Carolina

Robert J. Bylone, Jr., NRC Recycling Markets Council Co-Chair
Pennsylvania Recycling Markets Center

Jeffrey Cooper, NRC Fund Development Co-Chair
AECC Group
New York

Jack DeBell, NRC Campus Council Chair
University of Colorado

George Dreckmann, NRC At-Large Executive Committee Member
City of Madison

MaryEllen Etienne
Reuse Institute

John Frederick, NRC Liaison to National Standards Certification Board
Intermunicipal Relations Committee COG

David Juri Freeman 
City and County of Denver

Bob Gedert, NRC President 
City of Austin 
Marjie Griek, NRC Executive Vice President, NRC Finance Committee Co-Chair, and NRC Strategic Planning Committee Co-Chair 

Brent Hildebrand, NRC Membership Committee Co-Chair
Alpine Recycling and Waste

Doug Hill 
EcoVision Environmental

Mark Lichtenstein
State University of New York- College of Environmental Science and Forestry
New York

Gary Liss, NRC Secretary and SMM Summit Co-Chair 
Gary Liss & Associates
Fran McPoland,
NRC At-Large Executive Committee Member and NRC Policy Committee Co-Chair
Paper Recycling Coalition & 100% Recycled Paperboard Alliance
Washington, D.C.  

Michelle Minstrell, NRC Board Development Chair, and NRC Conference Co-Chair
Maite Quinn, NRC Communications Committee Co-Chair
Sims Municipal Recycling/ Sims Metal Management
New Jersey

Julie L Rhodes, Chair of the Board, NRC Treasurer, NRC Finance Co-Chair, NRC Strategic Planning Committee Co-Chair, and SMM Summit Co-Chair 
Julie L. Rhodes Consulting

Antonio Rios 
Puerto Rico Recycling Coalition
Puerto Rico
Will Sagar, NRC At-Large Executive Committee Member, NRC Business Development Co-Chair, and NRC Recycling Markets Council Co-Chair
Southeast Recycling Development Council
North Carolina  

Lisa Skumatz, NRC Awards Chair
Skumatz Economic Research Associates & Econservation Institute

Michael E. Van Brunt 
New Jersey  
Robin Wiener, NRC Recycling Jobs Task Force Co-Chair
Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries
Washington, D.C.

Melissa Young, NRC Communications Committee Co-Chair
Syracuse University Center for Sustainable Community Solutions
New York
Other NRC Leaders
Cliff Case Ex-officio, Honorary Board Member
Carter, Ledyard & Milburn, LLP
New York 
Murray Fox, Ex-officio, Honorary Board Member 

Terry Guerin, NRC Murray J. Fox Fund Co-Chair 
Guerin & Guerin, Inc.

Marie Kruzan, Membership Committee Co-Chair and National Standards Certification Board Chair 
Association of New Jersey Recyclers
New Jersey

Meg Morris, NRC Murray J. Fox Fund Co-Chair 

Michele Nestor, Ex-officio ROC Chair 
Nestor Resources, Inc.
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eNews Staff
NRC eNews Editor

2016 NRC Board Nominations are Open!

Hello Friends in Recycling,

Y our National Recycling Coalition needs you!  Please consider nominating a colleague, a friend or yourself to run for a position  on the NRC Board of Directors. As the NRC has become a major voice for supporting recycling, we need additional expertise to support our ambitious goals toward a meaningful impact nationwide and beyond.

The NRC continues our work to better define and promote recycling jobs, while our Policy Committee has produced a number of positions that are important to our industry. One of our major policy initiatives last year was support of the Recycling Industries Coalition  and their position on mixed-waste processing. The NRC Campus Council and NRC National Standards Certification Board - to name just two of our programs - are adding great value to the NRC, our members, and stakeholders. The Recycling Organizations Council - representing state and regional-level recycling organizations - has been engaged in numerous activities to support our affiliated recycling organizations. Those are just a few examples of the important items we are working on.

As exemplified by NRC's National Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) summit held in May 2015, your Coalition continues to move the needle on recycling within the Materials Management discussion. As the many testimonials we received tell us, the SMM summit was wildly successful. As we plan for a follow-up national forum, develop relationships with major industry associations, and increase engagement with USEPA toward supporting Materials Management, we need a wide variety of voices on our Board of Directors.

We need your help to move these and other important initiatives forward. Please consider becoming a leader of this very important organization. We complete nearly all of our work virtually through conference calls, reducing the monetary cost to Board members as much as possible, and there are numerous options for how one can best engage as a Board member.

The NRC continues traversing the right path to support recycling, but needs your help to drive it to the successful place we all envision. Partner with us by running for the NRC Board of Directors.
Together, We Are Recycling!

Sincerely yours,

Bob Gedert
NRC President

Electronic nominations close on Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 1:00pm ET/12:00pm CT/11:00am MT/10:00am PT and will reopen from the floor of the NRC Annual Members Meeting on Tuesday, August 30th at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside in New Orleans, LA.
Learn from the best at Resource Recycling Conference!
August 30th - September 1st, 2016
The exper tly  c urat ed sessions and networking  opp ortu nitie s
a t the  Resource Recycling Conference speak directly to the issues and trends affecting the  materials-recovery ecosystem right now.
At the 2016 event, expect in-depth analysis of key commodities markets and contamination concerns as well as insight into topics such as resident outreach, organics recovery, hauler contracting and state- and local-level policy creation.
The Resource Recycling Conference, now in its seventh year, brings together top corporate executives, well-connected government officials, nonprofit group leaders and other dynamic professionals.

2016 NRC Member Meetings:
The NRC will be hosting meetings in conjunction with Resource Recycling on:
Tuesday, August 30, 2016 
9:00-10:00am CT - NRC Board Meeting
10:00-12:00pm CT - NRC Annual Membership Meeting

Wednesday, August 31, 2016
12:15-1:30pm CT - NRC Board Meeting

Thursday, September 1, 2016
12:00-1:00pm - NRC Scholarship and Awards Lunch
Register now at!  
In Memorial
Remembering Cara Russell
A letter of acknowledgement from Althea Godfrey, CAFR member and 2016 scholarship winner

Cara Russell
It's probably safe to say everyone reading this newsletter knows the Colorado Association for Recyclers [CAFR] lost its executive director on June 28th.  But some readers may not have met Cara Russell, who was still new to the organization. I met Cara earlier that month, at the Summit in Grand Junction. I attended as a scholarship recipient, so everyone I met there was a new face, but Cara stood out in my memory. As CAFR President Juri Freeman's letter to all noted, Cara's "enthusiasm, professionalism, and positive demeanor had quickly won her a number of fans within the organization, including myself." However, it wasn't only her professional competence that made her memorable for me.

I remember Cara from a conversation we had at Friday night's reception. It was after dinner and all the awards had been handed out. The sun had gone down and the air had cooled a bit. We stood at the back of the dining area, holding our wine glasses and spoke about common events in our lives. We shared our experiences of moving, living in small towns and even the state of the nation right now. Both of us had been active in local affairs, but I had no idea that she had served as mayor of Buena Vista. I was impressed by her openness, and her broad perspective. Her competence was apparent then and in her activities at the conference. Like everyone else, I recognized her beautiful, inclusive smile.

Learning Cara was the victim of domestic violence so soon after that conversation was horrifying. My own shock is small compared to the pain experienced by those close to Cara and those who knew her longer. As an active public figure, Cara's loss is sure sadden the many people she touched during her life. Despite the regularity of domestic violence attacks, none of us expect that anyone we know will be a victim. We don't think of our co-workers, friends, or family members as potential statistics. Murder is incomprehensible, especially when enacted by someone who had once pledged to love and honor their victim. But the details of her murder are familiar-estrangement followed by violence.

Although news reports stated that Mickey Russell was becoming increasingly "unstable," I can't know if Cara was afraid of him, But that Cara left an unhappy marriage and started a new job and a new life in Denver seems to be in keeping with a woman who considered her life as an opportunity to serve and to move the ideas she believed in forward. Every CAFR member knows that anyone willing to work for environmental protection and shifting social behavior has determination and optimism.

My conversation with Cara that Friday night gave me a personal connection to the statistics. With this memory I will advocate for regulations that could bring more support for mental illness and to reduce gun violence. I think the person that we lost on June 28th might have done the same thing.

- Althea Godfrey

Click here to support Cara Russell's Memorial Fund
NRC Member Spotlight:
Terry Guerin receives National Award
Terry Guerin has been nominated as the Member of the Year at WasteExpo in Las Vegas for 2016. Terry has dedicated his life to the waste and recycling industry. He has demonstrated exemplary leadership and service to the industry and his recognition is well deserved. As past President of the National Recycling, we acknowledge his achievement and all he has accomplished for the NRC organization. Terry continuously devotes his time to serve as chair for the NRC Murray J. Fox Trust Fund committee.

In this new series, NRC member updates will be featured in the eNews. Have a member update of your own to share? Email Savannah Betkowski at  to have it featured in the next NRC eNews!
NRC Affiliate Spotlight:
Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center in Collaboration with NYSAR
2016 Tour Series: Waste Reduction, Reuse, and Recycling in NYS

The Syracuse University Environmental Finance Center (SU-EFC), in collaboration with the New York State Association for Reduction, Reuse, and Recycling (NYSAR³) and other local organizations, is coordinating a special series of tours taking place throughout New York State this summer and fall. Tours will be of exemplary sustainable materials management (SMM) facilities including recycling centers, composting operations, anaerobic digestion systems, reuse stores, food banks, and more. The goals: 1) To demonstrate how recyclables, organics, textiles, building supplies, and other materials are diverted from the waste stream and given a second, useful life. 2) To promote the implementation of SMM programs throughout the state.

Upcoming Area Tours:
August 12, 2016 
Albany, NY Area Tour

August 25, 2016
Buffalo, NY Area Tour

For more information and to register,  click here .
What is zero waste?
by Gary Liss
Reprinted from NRC's OpEd in Resource Recycling Magazine on May 17, 2016

Over the past five years or so, leading solid waste and 
recycling organizations, communities, and businesses across the country have increasingly embraced zero waste. Zero waste policies and programs establish practical ways to eliminate waste and safely reuse, recycle or compost discarded products and packaging. However, there has been confusion in the marketplace due to the many definitions of "zero" that are being used.

To address this confusion for its members and others, the National Recycling Coalition (NRC), identified the need to evaluate and come to consensus on a definition for zero waste. Earlier this year, the NRC Board adopted the definition offered up by the  Zero Waste International Alliance (ZWIA). It reads as follows: 

Zero Waste is a goal that is ethical, economical, efficient and visionary, to guide people in changing their lifestyles and practices to emulate sustainable natural cycles, where all discarded materials are designed to become resources for others to use. Zero Waste means designing and managing products and processes to systematically avoid and eliminate the volume and toxicity of waste and materials, conserve and recover all resources, and not burn or bury them. Implementing Zero Waste will eliminate all discharges to land, water or air that are a threat to planetary, human, animal or plant health.

The key measure of performance toward ZWIA's zero waste definition is diverting 90 percent of all discarded materials from landfills, incinerators and the environment. While it's true that 90 percent diversion does not equate to zero landfilling, the goal is viewed - both by ZWIA and NRC - as the most reasonable and yet ambitious target the industry should be aiming for.

One compelling reason for NRC to adopt the ZWIA definition of zero waste is that it is the only peer-reviewed definition in existence today. It's also been accepted by environmental, recycling and zero waste leaders all around the world. To date, many organizations, businesses and communities have adopted and support the ZWIA definition. It has also been embraced by many members of NRC.

Another facet of the ZWIA definition that NRC finds especially useful is that it does not count waste-to-energy as diversion. While some companies and groups have endorsed a "zero landfill" practice, it is important to ensure that diverted material is not headed for incineration either.

The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) has acknowledged that it has members that support waste-to-energy while others support zero waste. SWANA wants to support both of those groups of members, so it has agreed to view waste-to-energy as a non-zero waste diversion tactic. The U.S. Conference of Mayors also adopted a resolution last year that highlighted that waste-based energy should be counted as disposal, not diversion.

NRC hopes that adopting ZWIA's clearsighted definition will help its members and the industry to continue to strive for the highest waste diversion and recycling goals and encourage them to divert as much as possible by supporting recycling and also considering how zero waste policies and programs can achieve even greater objectives.
Why reuse matters
By The National Recycling Coalition's Board of Directors
Reprinted from NRC's OpEd in Resource Recycling 
Magazine June 14, 2016.

Ideally, a product should find its way into the recycling stream only when it has truly reached its end-of-life. 
This is why reuse matters so much: Reuse gives a second life to the products we use every day by finding effective and creative ways to utilize, repurpo se and distribute them.

Our focus on material collection, processing infrastructure, and recycling markets, however, sometimes pushes waste reduction and reuse into the background. It shouldn't be that way, and a growing body of evidence points to why reducing and reusing waste must be prioritized.

Drivers of change
In recent years, a range of powerful drivers have indeed made it necessary for decision-makers to take notice of the economic, environmental and social benefits of reuse. Some of these key issues include:

Climate change: Waste management activities and landfilling have been altering the planet at an alarming rate, causing ozone depletion, shifts in land use, permeability and surface reflectivity and other outcomes. In response to climate change, environmental advocates, businesses and others have been imploring world leaders to take action, and these actions must include a focus on eliminating wasteful practices and expanding reuse activities.

GHG emissions:  A  2009 report  from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency detailed the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions specifically tied to waste management activities. The report showed 42 percent of U.S. GHG emissions are associated with the production, processing, transport and disposal of the food we eat and the goods we use. This may seem like bad news, but such awareness has also elevated the importance of sustainable materials management (SMM) and the inherent value of reducing and reusing waste whenever possible.

SMM: The shift away from "waste management" encourages the highest and best use of materials across their entire life cycle (engaging in redesign, prioritizing waste reduction, fully utilizing reuse and recycling, and minimizing incineration and landfilling). SMM conserves resources, reduces waste, slows climate change and minimizes the impacts of the materials we use.

A need to expand our dialogue
Our current linear industrial and economic mind-set of "make, take, toss" clearly isn't sustainable. That approach, as scientific research shows, depletes finite reserves to create products that end up being disposed of after minimal use. We need to move toward a circular and cyclical model that addresses our resource use from product design to end-of-life. To do so, existing recycling programs need to expand their support for waste reduction and reuse programs.

One recent way NRC has worked to further waste reduction and reuse is by including those concepts as crucial parts of the national standards developed by the NRC National Standards Certification Board (NSCB) for Certified Sustainable Resource Management Professionals.

Clearly, waste reduction and reuse have been and remain important parts of our efforts to sustainably manage waste. NRC supports those efforts and is partnering with those providing services or advocating for extended producer responsibility, waste reduction, reuse and composting.

Many NRC members engage in and/or promote reduction and reuse activities, such as donating, upcycling, sharing and repairing. A vast range of materials can tie into reuse initiatives. A few examples are building materials, electronics, household furniture, industrial byproducts, recovered food and surplus school supplies.

By leveraging a comprehensive approach that takes into account all the different reuse opportunities available, our coalition can go beyond recycling and create a truly sustainable system for managing all products and materials.
National Recycling Coalition | 1220 L St NW | Suite 100-155 | Washington, DC 20005 |