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| be Waste Wise | June 1, 2020

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Updates and news from Be Waste Wise and beyond

Plastic Pollution Coalition

February 21, 2014 |

Plastic Pollution Coalition is a global alliance of individuals and organizations working together to stop plastic pollution.Read More

Advice for solving plastic pollution

February 20, 2014 |

“There are solutions out there. If we can put a man on the moon and send rovers to mars, we can solve plastic pollution.” ~ Bill FrancisRead More

Are bio-plastics a solution to ocean garbage patches?

February 20, 2014 | 2

“Bio-plastics have a role, but there is no standard to say what makes a bio-plastic which truly degrades in the ocean.” ~ Nicholas MallosRead More

Is the Ocean Cleanup Array Viable?

February 20, 2014 | 2

“They should consider designing it to work at a river mouth or even upstream where there is a potential concentrated plastic pollution source.” ~ Bill FrancisRead More

Why cannot we just clean up all plastic in the oceans?

February 20, 2014 | 2

“The oceans are so huge. Cleaning them up is like sifting the Sahara desert by using a kitchen strainer.” ~ Bill FrancisRead More

What can each of us do to reduce plastic pollution?

February 20, 2014 | 2

“As I learned more and more about plastic recycling, I discovered that it has its own drawbacks. So, I started reducing my own personal plastic as the first step .” ~ Beth TerryRead More

How much plastic is in the oceans?

February 20, 2014 | 1

“Out of 700 sea water samples from all over the world – Indian Ocean, North and South Atlantic, the Sargasso Sea, the Antarctic, South and North Pacific – only 3 samples were plastic-free.” ~ Bill FrancisRead More

Can one person really make a difference to plastic pollution?

February 20, 2014 | 4

“When people see you do it, it becomes part of the norm. So, take your own bag to the store and bring your own bottles.” ~ Beth TerryRead More

Difference between Plastic Pollution and Marine Debris

February 20, 2014 | 2

“Plastic pollution isn’t just about plastic in the oceans but the entire life-cycle of plastics, from when it’s first made, through all the pathways until it becomes plastic pollution” ~Nicholas MallosRead More

The 2014 Global Dialogue on Waste and other Updates: January, 2014 Newsletter

January 22, 2014 |

The 2014 Global Dialogue on Waste starts on March 1st, 2014. In 2013, we amplified 20 hours of dialogue into 500 hours of waste solutions education.Read More

Amplifying Voices to Bridge the Waste Solutions Expertise Gap – Results from our 2013 Global Dialogues on Waste

January 3, 2014 | 1

Through our 2013 global dialogues on waste, we amplified 20 hours of time from the best in waste into 500 hours of education. Twenty seven experts from…Read More

Craig Dsouza

December 12, 2013 |

Craig D’souza is a Research Associate working on water issues in the developing world. He currently works with the Forum for Policy Dialogue on Water Conflicts in India on themes such as the Right to Water and Sanitation, and Industrial-Agricultural water allocations.Read More

Compatibility Between Recycling and Waste-to-Energy

December 7, 2013 | 11

This panel addressed the role of waste-to-energy (if any) in the waste management hierarchy of North America and Europe, provided international experience on the degree of compatibility between recycling and waste-to-energy, analyses the arguments for the juxtaposition of waste-to-energy and recycling, and discusses the policies adopted in some communities to build successful sustainable waste management systems, with the general aim of moving away from landfills.Read More

Making the Spittelau Waste-to-Energy Plant Possible

November 19, 2013 | 1

During discussions and debates, environmentally competent people showed that the facts are for waste-to-energy through a thorough analysis. But, the public acceptance was still at stake, so the Mayor asked Friedensreich Hundertwasser, a famous Austrian artist if he could do something about the appearance of the Spittelau plant. Friedensreich Hundertwasser then took an year to discuss and check his spirit and conscience about the request and finally accepted to do it. He then wrote a long letter explaining why he decided to do so. A qualified public opinion poll conducted later showed that almost 50% were in favor of the Spittelau waste-to-energy plant. About 47% or so, had no opinion and only 3% were actually opposing it.Read More

Why are Recycling Rates Higher in Communities with Waste-to-Energy?

November 19, 2013 | 2

The major reason why you see higher recycling rates in areas with waste-to-energy compared to those that don’t is basically the state and local policy environment. To just make the decision to move to waste-to-energy facility there has to be a lot of studies of feasibility, including understanding the waste stream, thinking through what the different streams of waste you have. How can you best maximize those streams? The kind of planning that goes into this type of a facility really engages the whole gamut of the waste management stream. So, those localities, and solid waste districts that have sited or are looking at moving to waste-to-energy as one part of their waste disposal strategy are also engaged in an integrated waste policy initiative.Read More

Plastics and Green House Gas Emissions from Waste-to-Energy

November 19, 2013 | 2

“After doing the material and energy balances for waste-to-energy in the city of Vienna, we found that by providing both district heating and electricity, waste-to-energy in Vienna reduces the equivalent of 1.4 tonnes of CO2 emissions compared to landfilling with recovery of some landfill gas for electricity generation. So, 1.4 tonnes of CO2 can be saved by 1 tonne of municipal residual waste going into the waste-to-energy facility in Vienna.”Read More

Program Barriers to Waste-to-Energy Adoption

November 19, 2013 | 4

“Some U.S. liberal groups like the Center for American Progress are beginning to realize that times have changed, the science has changed, and that we’re contributing to climate change by landfilling so much of our waste, and that waste-to-energy is actually a way of reducing climate change. So, if more environmental groups that provide information and messaging to liberals take a closer look at the science, I think that we can begin to move the conversation in a little more productive way.”Read More

Environmentalists’ Opposition to Waste-to-Energy

November 19, 2013 | 4

A lot of it has to do with U.S. history around science and the birth of environmental science in the 1970’s with Rachel Carson’s book Silent Spring and the revelation that chemicals in the environment maybe poisoning us without our knowledge. That caused a political split in our conversation between environmentalists on the political left and the chemical and petroleum industries which moved to the political right. And, we see that alignment existing even to this day.Read More

Correlation Between Recycling Rates and Waste-to-Energy

November 19, 2013 | 5

In the last 15 years, waste-to-energy as the percentage of waste generated has come down. Starting from 19% in 1995 down to about 12% of the waste now. So, we’ve actually gone backwards in terms of waste-to-energy. Recycling has gone up, from about 25% to about 34% from 1995. But that’s not a huge increase either in 15 years! If you add these two rates, the waste that’s converted to energy and waste that’s recovered by recycling hasn’t changed in the last 15 years. We’re still landfilling about 54-55% of waste.Read More

Waste-to-Energy in the Waste Management Hierarchy

November 9, 2013 | 3

Waste-to-Energy is a strategy that many cities with dense population, have issues with landfilling, and want to decrease waste transportation distances are using and continue to look at. Waste-to-energy is also a technology that has been evolving over the years and there are many new developments in this technology, moving in mainly one direction – to be able to applied to smaller size waste streams. Not only is it a strategy that has real importance for the current public policy, it is a strategy that will definitely present itself to additional areas.Read More

Twitter Testimonials

October 7, 2013 |

We are here because of our community. Read what they are saying about us, and share what you agree with…Read More

Comments Invited: India’s New Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) Rules

October 7, 2013 |

Until 28th October, 2013, you can submit your comments on India’s new Municipal Waste (Management & Handling) Rules, 2013 (Draft) to its Ministry of Environment and Forests. Details…Read More

Integrating the Informal Waste Recycling Sector in Latin America

October 3, 2013 | 7

“When designing solutions for inteftrating informal waste recycling, we need an adequate understanding of how the overall system is currently working including both formal and informal elements”. – Jane Olley
This panel explored how solid waste management is different in the Global South, and in particular in Latin America and the Caribbean, and considers the benefits of integrating the informal sector into municipal waste management strategies.Read More

Regional Initiative for Inclusive Recycling

October 2, 2013 |

The Regional Initiative for Inclusive Recycling is a four year program which aims to increase the access of informal waste recyclers to recycling markets in Latin America and Caribbean (LAC). It was founded by the Multilateral Investment Fund, the Inter-American Development Bank’s Water and Sanitation Division, Avina Foundation, and The Coca-Cola Company.Read More

Earth Engineering Center

October 2, 2013 |

The Earth Engineering Center (EEC) of Columbia University works on advancing the goals of sustainable waste management in the U.S. and globally. The mission of EEC is to identify and help develop the most suitable means for the recovery of materials and energy from solid and liquid wastes and the preservation of land and water resources. It aims to do so by disseminating this information by means of publications, the web, and technical meetings.Read More

Athanasios Bourtsalas

September 27, 2013 |

Athanasios Bourtsalas is the Principal Researcher at Be Waste Wise and is a PhD researcher at Imperial College London, working on higher value applications for residues from waste to energyRead More

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