Senate Committee passes recycling amendment
A secret no more, recycling was acknowledged for its contribution to fighting
climate change by the United States Senate committee drafting the climate
change bill, S. 2191, according to the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries
(ISRI) president Robin Wiener.
The amendment introduced by Sen. Carper, co-chair of the
Senate Recycling Caucus, strengthens recycling as a tool against climate
change in two ways:
- It provides for a lifecycle study of the benefits of recycling
regarding the reduction or avoidance of greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs)
with a view toward the use of recyclables in the manufacturing process;
the impact that design for recycling will have on increasing recyclables
output; and the establishment of a standardized GHG emission reduction
measurement and certification protocol for manufactured products and scrap
- It provides funding to improve or increase various recycling
activities in states for statewide programs.
Recycling’s ability to fight climate change stems from its affect on
sustainability by reducing the need to exploit many of the earth’s
natural resources and by the significant decrease in energy usage derived
from processing recyclable materials as manufacturing feedstock compared
to processing virgin materials.
“By all accounts and by every possible metric, the activity of recycling
is among the most climate friendly activities imaginable,” Wiener added. “Recycling
is prevalent in the United States, with both a private and a public infrastructure
in place to immediately increase the recycling of materials as diverse as
bridges, automobiles, pipes, office paper, tires, and computers, in addition
to common household recyclables like cans, bottles and newspaper.”
In addition to ISRI, the following recycling organizations
support the Carper recycling amendment: Aluminum Association, Glass Packaging
Institute (GPI), Paper Recycling Coalition (PRC), Owens-Illinois, Solid
Waste Association of North America (SWANA), Steel Recycling Institute (SRI),
National Recycling Coalition (NRC), American Forest and Paper Association
Solid Waste Management Association (NSWMA), and Tomra, North America.