MSW Management

Turning Plastic into Lumber

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For most of my adult working life, I’ve faced deadlines. I’ve had to make them as a reporter, as a writer, and as an editor. They’ve become such an integral part of my existence and I’ve been able to meet them time and again so that I don’t feel any sense of dread. I do feel an urgency and confidence that I’ll make each deadline.

I guess that’s the result of a lifetime of facing them.

I do dread one upcoming deadline. It’s that of Thursday, March 1, 2018. That’s when China’s Waste Ban and its 0.5% contamination standard take effect.

Managing municipal solid waste is more than landfilling: publicity, education, engineering, long-term planning, and landfill gas waste-to-energy are specialties needed in today’s complex environment. We’ve created a handy infographic featuring 6 tips to improve landfill management and achieve excellence in operations.  6 Tips for Excellence in Landfill Operations. Download it now!

The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) has established a new Recycling Task Force to provide guidance to members, industry stakeholders, state/provincial and local governments, and elected officials concerning the challenges facing recycling programs in the US and Canada.

Kim Braun will serve on the Task Force. She’s the environmental programs and operations manager for Culver City, CA. She says, “SWANA’s Recycling Task Force will reduce dependency on minimal end markets by creating strategies, developing infrastructures, and marketing SWANA’s commitment to sustainable recycling programs in North America. Although we may feel some pressure now, the future holds so much opportunity—jobs, reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, invention of the newest technologies, and the creation of new sustainable markets, all of which the Recycling Task Force will support.”

It is in that spirit that I offer my two cents for the week and bring to your attention a process that has recently come to my attention. American Cierra’s Plastic Lumber Manufacturing Equipment and Systems makes plastic lumber and other products via the manual extrusion from recycled and other waste plastics. The process creates a polymer that is molded into different types of products.

Check it out…

That dark gloomy shadow that is the China Waste Ban is shrinking little by little. MSW_bug_web

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  1. There is a push to reduce the use of plastics and attention on the troubles with micro plastics. I would be interested to read long range plans regarding the reuse of plastic materials. Specifically if there is anticipation of a significant reduction of post consumer plastics to the point that alternative lumber, etc could be impacted.

  2. This technology is hardly new, having been around for many years. Here in Australia, this technology has ehlped produce all the plastic lunber for a pearl farm and oyster beds, vineyard stakes and sound proof fences. But yes, could do with more promotion generally.

  3. saving and collecting plastics to make ourselves feel good but really just shipping our trash to China is not a very sustainable solution. We can provide vast quantities of raw materials to anyone who can use them, so we should be encouraging manufacturers to come up with uses here in this country.

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