Latest News


The Times They Are A-Changing

If nothing else, the recycling market is exciting! Prices for recyclables go up and down, tipping fees for MSW (Municipal Solid Waste) increase, methods of collecting waste change, and our members change with them. NRRA has worked with Merrimack, NH for the last 20 years and Solid Waste Foreman, Kris Perreault, is active on our listserve. Merrimack has changed from a community that source separated recyclables (residents sort aluminum cans in one bin, cardboard in another bin, etc.) to baling single stream material (residents combine all recyclables into one bin) in a 100 cubic yard trailer to compacting this material. They currently work with NRRA to move their single stream material, as well as scrap metal, freon, electronics, bulbs, propane, and tires.

We are approaching town budget season, and some have their Municipal Solid Waste contracts to review. NRRA can assist members with...Read more


Did you know that NRRA helped its members recycle 2,206,857 pounds of plastics in 2019? According to estimates from the Environmental Protection Agency, those recycled plastics had the environmental impact of conserving 1,655,145 gallons of gasoline! To learn more about the other materials NRRA members have recycled and their environmental impact, check out our most recent Annual Report . NRRA members and their residents are increasingly hearing negative news about plastic recycling, including a recent NPR story " How Big Oil Misled The Public Into Believing Plastic Would Be Recycled ." While there are some challenges and limitations with plastics recycling, NRRA enables its members to responsibly recycle many plastics.

For example, NRRA offers a #1-7 baled plastics program for our members, which accounted for 25% of all plastics marketed for NRRA members in 2019. NRRA’s Vendor, Trigon Plastics in Newmanstown, PA, processes 90% of...Read more


NRRA would like to thank Madeleine DiIonno for her valuable volunteer service to NRRA. Over the past year, Madeleine assisted NRRA as a graduate student at the University of New Hampshire Carsey School of Public Policy. She volunteered her time to assist NRRA with its glass recycling work, and in particular, its processed glass aggregate program. Thanks to Madeleine's efforts, NRRA was able to provide a number of valuable resources to its members related to NRRA's processed glass aggregate program, including the following:

PGA Specifications and Approved Uses by State in New England : A document summarizing the gradation and contamination requirements, as well as the approves uses, for processed glass aggregate for the environmental protection agency and the transportation agency for each of the New England states. Preparing this document involved considerable research and consultation with various state agencies.

Processed Glass Aggregate Survey Report...Read more
SHIP Lessons (Supporting Home Instruction Plan)

NRRA's School Recycling Club has pivoted their on-site classroom workshops and school-wide technical assistance programs to remote workshops and created nine free lesson plans from NRRA's school recycling curricula in response to COVID-19.

Nine lessons from NRRA's nationally recognized curricula ( 3R's of the Common Core: Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make it Do, or Do Without and Teaching Toxics : Creating Solutions to Household Pollution ) were broken out for age groups K-3, 4-6, 7-8 and 9-12. Each lesson plan packet includes a video introduction aligned with each packet theme, the Common Core Matrix (for teachers), a NRRA curricula lesson, a craft or activity and a link foradditional sources.

Lessons include: Recycling and Composting; Reuse and Repackaging; and Hazardous Homes. The goal is to keep recycling education alive both in the home...Read more

We made lemonade out of lemons. NRRA is pleased to announce our 2020 Summer Webinar Series recordings are available! Eighteen presentations that would have been available at our annual conference are ready to be watched.

These webinars are available are open to all. The following audiences are encouraged to participate: municipal recycling and transfer station staff, solid waste operators, public works staff, state and local government officials and staff, educators and community members. New Hampshire solid waste operators will receive one hour of continuing education credit for each webinar for participating.

Summer Webinar Series Recordings

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It all started on a summer afternoon in 2008 when Ivar Martin was crushing rocks for the town of Goffstown, NH. He was watching the glass crusher that NRRA hired and said, "I can build a better mousetrap (glass crusher)". Ivar did and has been NRRA's glass crusher ever since that time for our Processed Glass Aggregate (PGA) program! Glass collected through community recycling programs includes clear, green, and brown food or beverage containers. Glass used to be separated by color, but the market price for recycled glass as cullet continues to decrease. The weight of glass makes it costly to move to a facility to recycle for some communities. Instead, state environmental protection and transportation departments encourage recycled glass to be used locally as a replacement for gravel, crushed gravel, or crushed stone. NRRA’s PGA program outlines the requirements for the acceptable use of PGA as backfill material, drainage,...Read more

The Northeast Resource Recovery Association appreciates pets who remind everyone to recycle!Read more


Did you know that NRRA is filming a video about processed glass aggregate (PGA) and how it can be used in road and infrastructure projects? About 65 communities in New Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusetts participate in NRRA's PGA program, which enables communities to consolidate their glass bottles and jars at host sites. The glass is then crushed into an aggregate for local use.

Filming took place over three days at and around NRRA's PGA host sites in New London, NH and Rochester, NH. The film will be available this fall and will feature interviews with NRRA members about both their experience participating in NRRA's program and their experience using the resulting aggregate in municipal public works projects. This film with be a modern version of an older PGA film NRRA worked with New Hampshire the Beautiful to produce decades ago.

To...Read more


NRRA participated in the North Country Council's "Solid Waste in the North Country" event on August 19 for a discussion of solid waste management systems, the importance of recycling, and the general management of various types of waste in New Hampshire. The event was held remotely and the speakers included Reagan Bissonnette, NRRA Executive Director , Brian Patnoe, NRRA Board member and Solid Waste Manager for the Town of Littleton, NH, and staff from the NH Department of Environmental Services.

As part of her presentation, Reagan answered the following three questions for the nearly 30 attendees. A summary of her answers are included below.

What are you seeing or hearing in regards to how municipalities have adapted practices in response to COVID-19?

There was much uncertainty in mid-March at the beginning of the pandemic, and some communities stopped recycling all or...Read more


Did you know that July 28 is National Milk Chocolate Day? Our own Heather Herring, Education Manager, recently presented as part of Sustainability Day to members of the Lindt Chocolate Research and Development, Creativity, and Procurement Teams. They requested to learn more about where NH garbage goes and if recycling is really happening today. This young energetic group had lots of specific questions about the recycability of their candy wrappers, plastic trays, and packaging. They are looking into package design for their products and were recommended to consult with NRRA as part of Lindt's Sustainability Report priorities. NRRA was pleased to hear that a chocolate company was working on sustainability from cradle to grave.

To learn more about Extended Producer Responsibility, please register for NRRA's webinar on August 26th !Read more