casella recycling plant
Recyclers can help provide critical raw materials to maintain supply chains within U.S. borders, says the NWRA.
Photo courtesy of Casella Waste Systems Inc.

NWRA ties recycling into supply chain resiliency

Trade group urges Congress to support recycling for the sake of critical U.S. supply chains.

May 3, 2021

The Arlington, Virginia-based National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) has sent a letter to leaders of a United States House of Representatives subcommittee urging them to consider the role of recycling in providing “supply chain resiliency” to the United States economy.

The letter to the House Small Business Committee Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access Chair Sharice Davids (D-Kansas) and ranking member Dan Mueser (R-Pennsylvania), refers to how “the COVID-19 pandemic saw an increase in demand for domestic manufactured goods and supplies as well as a corresponding demand for raw materials by U.S. manufacturers.”

Continues NWRA President and CEO Darrell Smith in his letter, “Had there been greater domestic recycling infrastructure capacity in place, recyclables could have better helped to meet the demand. NWRA urges Congress to look toward recyclables as part of the solution to the feedstock shortage that has been impacting small manufacturers and disrupting our nation’s supply chain resiliency.”

NWRA submitted its letter prior to an April 29 subcommittee hearing on April 29 on “Supply Chain Resiliency and the Role of Small Manufacturers.”

The trade group says Congress and federal agencies currently have “an opportunity to implement policies that encourage our nation’s domestic recycling infrastructure as well as the use of recyclable materials where it makes economic sense to do so while avoiding the issuance of mandates.”

The NWRA cites tax credits, block grants and “regulatory relief encouraging the development of a more robust domestic recycling infrastructure and the market for consumer recyclables as well as research and education” as examples of such policies that can “help meet the feedstock demands of America’s small manufacturers.”