NRRA’s September Member Operations Marketing (MOM) meeting was held on a beautiful sunny morning at Walpole, NH’s Recycling Center and Transfer Station. The highlight of the meeting was a tour of Walpole’s new Reuse Center and other facility improvements led by Ben Hoy, Recycling Manager. The facility is known to have a hearty supply of volunteers to assist with its programs along with knowledgeable staff consisting of Patty Whitcomb, Shaena Hakey, and Tom Donovan.
The MOM meeting was held on a paved work area behind the facility, which is used to help with loading storage containers of baled recyclables. A concrete pad expansion was added for the municipal solid waste compactors to help in packing out compactors and switching them out when they are full.
Walpole’s Reuse Center was damaged in a storm when a tree came down on it. Luckily, no one was hurt. Walpole decided to...Read more
It was a beautiful day in New England and the sixth graders were curious about the waste audit on their playground. Heather Herring, Member Services Representative at the Northeast Resource Recovery Association (NRRA), was welcomed onto Bow Memorial School grounds by Principal Adam Osburn to hold NRRA’s first Trash On the Lawn Day (TOLD) since the pandemic began. Bow, NH High School Senior, Jessica Chamberlin, contacted NRRA with the idea to coordinate a TOLD to fulfill her senior project on waste and human impact. Funding was provided by New Hampshire the Beautiful and the Bow Parent Teacher Association.
Students and teachers conducted a waste audit of one day’s worth of waste from their school by sorting it into categories of trash, recyclables, food waste, and special collections (markers and highlighters). First, students weighed 16 bags of unsorted Municipal Solid Waste. Students wore nitrile gloves and masks and...Read more
Since last fall and in recent months, NRRA staff have been working to develop three potential new outlets for recycling glass through NRRA. One involves a new facility in Massachusetts for current NRRA vendor 2M Ressources, one is a brand new company being established, and the last involves an existing company opening a new facility to recycle glass. NRRA carefully vets potential vendors and staff have had numerous communications with these potential glass recycling outlets.2M Ressources
NRRA currently works with 2M Ressources to send glass bottles and jars to their facility outside Montreal, Canada. 2M Ressources has opened a new facility in Hopedale, MA and looks forward to accepting glass bottles and jars from municipalities through NRRA in the near future. As described in a recent news article , 2M Ressources chose the Hopedale, MA location in part because of its proximity to a rail...Read more
NRRA receives photos of material from our recycling facility operators every week. We share the photos with vendors who want to buy the material in the marketplace. Vendors have specific things they are looking for: weight and size of a bale, percent amount of allowable contamination, whether it has been stored inside, and how it has been contained (wires, gaylords, etc.) Sometimes we gasp in awe of a spectacular bale or a super clean gaylord of material. NRRA decided to share some of the photos we have on file to show everyone both exemplars of beautiful recyclables. We also have photos of original art that are on display at our unique municipal-member recycling facilities. Get inspired to collect a gorgeous gaylord or a beautiful bale in your town! Contact NRRA if you would like us to help you move your art.
You have likely heard about the supposed death of recycling in recent years. But have you heard that recycling is actually thriving again? If this comes as a surprise to you, you’re not alone. I recently read a local article with outdated and inaccurate information about recycling markets. So I thought I’d set the record straight. As a bonus, I’ll tell you the single most valuable item in your recycling bin today. The answer may surprise you.
It’s true that China used to be a major global purchaser of recyclables until it implemented a ban in 2018 that led to a dramatic disruption and decrease in pricing worldwide for many recyclable materials. As a result, some communities across the United States stopped recycling due to increased costs, including in New Hampshire. This bad news traveled fast. However, the less exciting truth is that the vast majority of New Hampshire...Read more
You may be asking what can one person do about waste, recycling, and your town’s decisions? How can one person make a difference? The City of Keene approached the Northeast Resource Recovery Association (NRRA) because the City is interested in decreasing tonnage sent to the landfill and educating the public on the value of composting food scraps. NRRA partnered with the City of Keene to conduct a season-long pilot program to test two methods to divert food scraps from twelve resident households. Keene’s goal is to keep as much food scraps weight out of their municipal solid waste because tipping fees for solid waste disposal are increasing. By composting the weight of their food waste, which was estimated nationally by the Environmental Protection Agency to be 24.1% of municipal solid waste in 2018, residents can point to visible change in their environment and save the City money. Volunteers were asked...Read more
On August 10, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu signed HB 413 into law. The law (1) establishes a solid waste working group on solid waste management planning; (2) requires the NH Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) to make certain rules regarding composting meat and dairy products; and (3) establishes a statewide solid waste disposal reduction goal. This bill was developed from the findings of the HB 617 Recycling & Solid Waste Study Committee led by Rep. Karen Ebel, which held hearings and produced an extensive report in the fall of 2019. NRRA was actively involved with the Committee's work and will have a representative on the solid waste working group.
In addition, the NH Municipal Association is seeking two municipal volunteers to serve on the solid waste working group: one representing communities with single stream recycling and one representing rural communities using...Read more
One common question NRRA staff get asked is “does my thermostat contain mercury?” Mercury thermostats are considered Universal Waste, meaning they contain a material that is hazardous. Universal wastes must be managed in a way that prevents chemical release into the environment, resulting in more strict regulation of these items. However digital thermostats, and many manual thermostats produced today do not contain mercury. These newer thermostats fall under the category of electronic waste and are subject to different regulations and are recycled using a different process. Many thermostats in homes built prior to 2002 will contain mercury. These thermostats are typically operated by dials or switches, as well as other models of non-programable thermostats. The best way to identify mercury in a thermostat is by removing the front plate or cover and locating the small glass tube inside. If the tube contains a silver liquid with a bubble on top,...Read more
Let's have a round of applause for Andover, NH, who recently earned a Grade A from our NRRA vendor for their last load of cardboard! Grade A is usually reserved for the cardboard that comes from grocery stores because it contains little contamination (it is pure unboxed material for groceries and is kept dry under shelter). Congratulations to the staff at Andover for their quality material.