Canadian Packaging

Report examines evolving curbside recycling stream

American Council's plastic division sponsors report examining changes to U.S. municipal solid waste streams and the recycling industry.

March 3, 2015  By Andrew Joseph

WASHINGTON, DC—A report released on March 3, 2015 looks to provide insights into recent and anticipated changes in municipal solid waste streams and what those changes could mean for the recycling industry.

The American Chemistry Council’s Plastics Division sponsored the report, “Making Sense of the Mix: Analysis and Implications for the Changing Curbside Recycling Stream,” which focuses mainly on plastics, to promote greater understanding among government, materials recovery facilities (MRFs), and waste management firms that are working to generate value from post-use materials.

Over the past decade, recyclers have had to adjust to a range of changes, from the sharp decline in newsprint to the adoption of larger carts and single-stream collection.

The report provides a look at factors that have shaped today’s waste stream and trends that are likely to influence the waste stream in the years ahead.


These include growing consumer demand for recycled content in products and packaging, the potential removal of organics (i.e. food waste) from municipal solid waste, growing interest in mixed waste processing facilities, and the globalization of recycling markets.

“Plastics makers recognize the critical role that recyclers play in the value chain and in sustainable living,” says American Chemistry Council vice-president of plastics Steve Russell. “The evolving waste stream can create both challenges and opportunities for recyclers, and we want to help them succeed.”

Green Spectrum Consulting, LLC, and Resource Recycling, Inc. authored this report, which can be fun HERE.

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