I’ve been making a list of the things I’d like to do in Nashville, TN, when I’m there for WASTECON 2018 this month. Of course I’d like to see the Grand Ole Opry. I like to wear black a lot so I want to visit the Johnny Cash Museum. Nelson’s Green Briar Distillery seems to be a must-do. I hope there’s time to see the Historic RCA Studio B.
The reality is I may not get to see all of that. WASTECON 2018 is shaping up to be one of the most unique in its history and I may spend all, if not most, of my energy on the conference. If you’re not already registered, you can handle that right now by clicking here.
The executive director and CEO of the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), David Biderman, tells me, “WASTECON 2018 is going to be a very special event with lots of terrific networking and educational opportunities, in a wonderful and fun city (Nashville). In addition to the popular SWANA Training Center, we are providing a broad mix of interactive keynote sessions that will provide attendees with information they can use immediately when they return to the office. I’m looking forward to my interview with Ron Mittelstaedt, the CEO of Waste Connections, who will provide his thoughts on the future direction of the industry. The MRF Summit is likely to be very well attended, as the industry focuses on responding to the challenges posed by China’s waste restrictions. We have a variety of safety-related sessions, and will be giving out SWANA’s Safety Awards, which recognize the very best and innovative safety programs in North America. Personally, I hope I have time to spend a few minutes with many of SWANA’s members, and discuss how SWANA can provide them with even better programs and service.”
David mentioned the MRF Summit. SWANA and the Institution of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) are collaborating to present the 2018 Materials Recovery Facilities (MRF) summit. He says, “We are very excited to be holding the MRF Summit at WASTECON, together with ISRI. This event brings together the two associations that have taken the lead on responding to the challenges posed by China’s imposition of import restrictions on recyclables in the United States and China. We have a variety of terrific sessions and speakers, including current and former high-level EPA officials, who will provide insights and guidance on this continuing and evolving disruption to recycling operations and programs. I’m particularly looking forward to the session comparing single stream and dual stream, as some believe that contamination rates are far lower in dual stream systems.”
One must-see keynote is “The Changing Market for Recyclable Materials.” Yours truly will be moderating this discussion. The panel will feature David Biderman, ISRI President Robin Wiener, and Stephen Sikra, the Associate Director of Corporate Research and Development at Procter & Gamble. These panelists will give us a summary of the new policies in China and then offer their insights and expertise on how these policies will change the recycling industry now and into the future.
If you have any questions you would like me to pose to the panel, please put them in the comment section below.