Association News

Departments - Industry News

Recent news and developments from the waste and environmental services industry.

March 5, 2018

SWANA opens scholarship applications

The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), Silver Spring, Maryland, has announced that the 2018 Grant H. Flint scholarship program is accepting applications through May 1.

SWANA will award up to $25,000 in scholarships to students in 2018. SWANA’s 45 chapters forward local candidates to the Grant H. Flint scholarship program and provide local scholarships in their individual areas.

“Supporting the education of students with the intention of attracting them to the solid waste and resource management industries has long been a SWANA mission,” Darryl Walter, SWANA’s director of membership, says. “This is another high impact program that allows SWANA and its chapters to support students in their college and graduate efforts. We look forward to awarding scholarships to deserving applicants for 2018.”

Applications are accepted at three levels:

  • Category I: High school seniors
  • Category II: Undergraduate juniors or seniors pursuing a degree in a field related to solid waste management
  • Robert P. Stearns/SCS Engineers: Full-time students entering or in graduate studies in a related area

High school students must be the children or grandchildren of current SWANA members to be eligible. College and graduate students must be either be a SWANA member or be sponsored by a SWANA member for eligibility.

SWANA offers free membership for students enrolled at the undergraduate or graduate level with the goal of developing the next generation of professionals, the association says.

Scholarship applications are available through SWANA chapters and must be received by individual chapter scholarship chairpersons by May 1, 2018, to be considered for funding.

Applications for use by at-large members are posted on the SWANA website.

For more information about the Grant H. Flint scholarship awards program or for chapter contacts, please email SWANA Deputy Executive Director Sara Bixby.

SWANA report outlines European waste treatment methods

A new report issued by the Solid Waste Association of North America’s (SWANA’s) Applied Research Foundation (ARF) presents lessons that can be learned from the implementation and operation of mechanical biological treatment (MBT) facilities in Europe. SWANA and the ARF are headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland.

The report has been developed in response to a growing interest in the implementation of zero-waste systems in North America, as many zero-waste systems will use some type of MBT facility to process waste that is not recovered through recycling programs. Later this year, the first MBT facility in the eastern U.S. will open in West Virginia.

“This report should serve as a valuable resource to the growing number of communities that are considering or implementing additional mixed waste processing systems in North America,” Jeremy O’Brien, SWANA’s director of applied research, says. “These communities can benefit from the experiences and lessons learned in Europe over the last 25 or so years with MBT facilities.”

MBT facilities combine mechanical waste sorting with a biological treatment process such as composting or anaerobic digestion. These systems are used to recover additional materials for recycling or energy recovery and to stabilize the waste.

“Important lessons include the fact that the compost produced from MBT systems is generally of poor quality and not usable for agricultural applications,” O’Brien says. “Also, the diversion rates have been on the order of 20 percent without energy recovery.

MBT systems have been implemented in Europe over the last 25 years to meet the requirements of the 1999 European Union Landfill Directive, which requires waste to be treated so that it is biologically stable before being disposed in landfills.

The full report, “Mechanical Biological Treatment of Residual Waste—Lessons from Europe,” is currently only available to SWANA ARF subscribers. SWANA members receive free access to ARF industry reports one year after publication.