Materials Recovery & Recycling
Recapturing the value of materials after their initial use
No single sector, technology or approach can solve the mounting global waste challenge. First, it’s critical that we reduce the overall volume of waste generated each year by focusing on upstream waste prevention strategies, such as design innovation, reduction in material usage, the introduction of reuse systems at scale and passing the necessary policies to prevent waste. At the same time, it’s important that we grow and strengthen recycling and composting infrastructure, which serve as the reverse logistics mechanism to recapture the value of materials already in circulation
It’s easy to think ‘out of sight, out of mind,’ when throwing something in the trash. But all this waste does not magically disappear. Globally, more than 2 billion tons of waste are produced every year and billions of dollars are spent sending resources to landfill, releasing greenhouse gases and contributing to climate change.
There is a misalignment between the amount of materials produced today––from packaging to consumer products––and the infrastructure available to recover, process and return them after use to supply chains. Technological inefficiencies and a diversity of material formats that don’t align with the market realities of recycling and composting facilities have resulted in bottlenecks across the system.
Across Closed Loop Partners and our Center for the Circular Economy, we work to strengthen and grow the infrastructure necessary to collect, recover, re-manufacture and resell materials after their initial use. This includes optimizing mechanical recycling systems, alongside newer molecular recycling technologies and composting infrastructure.
OUR FOCUS AREAS
Explore our efforts to grow and strengthen recycling facilities across the United States.
Molecular Recycling Technologies
Explore our research and assessment of the role of molecular recycling technologies in a circular economy.
Explore our efforts to strengthen the collection and processing of compostable packaging and food scraps.