Release Date: August 8, 2011

Contact: Pam Blackledge, 208-344-4043

Environmental Paper Network (EPN) Applauds Senate Resolution Calling For Improved Recycling

Washington, D.C. – Senate Resolution 251 was introduced on August 2nd by the co-chairs of the Recycling Caucus, Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) and Senator Olympia Snowe (R–ME). The intent behind the non-binding resolution was to showcase the high level benefits that recycling provides the US economy, jobs, and the environment. At the same time, the bill calls for needed improvement to the current collection, processing, manufacturing and consuming of recyclables and recycled materials.

“In today’s political environment, this is a positive step forward to building the foundation of support for the US recycling industry,” stated Pam Blackledge of the Environmental Paper Network’s RePaper Project. “Senate Resolution 251 is something that everyone can and should be willing to get behind. We greatly appreciate that the bill showcases the extreme value that recycling offers our communities, our environment, and our economy while still pushing for further improvements. We’re grateful that Senators Carper and Snowe were able and willing to push this bill forward.”

The bill highlights the fact that recycling directly and indirectly employs more than 450,000 Americans, while creating more than $90 billion in economic output – .6 percent of the US Gross Domestic Product. In terms of environmental savings, the bill highlights that energy use is dramatically lessened due to using recycled resources, highlighting that recycled newsprint takes 45% less energy than virgin newsprint. The bill has been referred to the Environmental and Public Works committee.

Along with EPN, numerous organisations have endorsed the resolution, including National Recycling Coalition, Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, Paper Recycling Coalition, Solid Waste Association of North America, Steel Recycling Institute, American Forest and Paper Association, Aluminum Association and Recycling Organizations of North America.