Updated USCC website includes tools to help communities in lobbying for improved composting
The US Composting Council has unveiled a new suite of web pages that provides more user tools for members and composting advocates and organizes top composting issues for easier navigation.
The new pages are meant to help advocates and visitors find information about U.S. state regulations and legislation surrounding composting and organics recycling more easily, and provides guides on how to be better advocates and easy access to background on the most pressing issues facing composting.
According to the USCC, the revamped site meets member requests for more information to improve their ability to lobby for composting in their areas and nationwide. "This in part fulfills one of the Council's major Strategic Plan goals," said Frank Franciosi-Executive Director.
The site now includes a toolkit providing letters to the editor, and language about the importance of composting, that can be used in testifying in favour of compost facilities or programs. There is also a tip sheet on recommendations on testifying virtually and an "advocacy tracking form", so USCC can keep up with advocacy efforts.
For state issues, visitors can find resources under a section devoted to states, which is where most compost issues are regulated. The sections focused on "hot issues", namely persistent herbicides and perfluoroalykl substances (PFAS), as well as extended producer responsibility and infrastructure development, consolidates resources on these issues.
Advocacy is a major priority of the USCC. This past summer, the USCC (a trade organization comprised primarily of business/professionals) launched a new membership for individuals interested in lobbying for compost, called the Advocate membership, to answer needs and requests for more citizen advocacy for the compost industry.
In 2020, USCC conducted a member survey to determine what issues, approaches and tools should be emphasized in lobbying for the compost industry, along with a focus group that followed. Both projects generated many of the features of the new web pages.
Traditionally, waste management companies have operated using a simple "management of waste" approach to operating a MRF. Throughput targets and continuous operation (minimal downtime) were the main driving forces. The industry has changed however, and the focus moving forward is now on optimizing system performance and reliability, in conjunction with increasing recycling rates and a drive for a "greener" and more sustainable tomorrow.
When considering the addition of, or upgrade to, an "intelligent" MRF, for municipalities or private operators, the main factors should always be the client's (operator) current requirements, and evolving market needs, which include throughput, reliability, output quality, and adaptability. Equally important is a full understanding of what is really expected from any proposed system. Having an engaged and focused mindset for the project with the client from the beginning, will impact and drive the entire design process. This then impacts the overall project result, through to the productive, efficient, ongoing operation of the facility itself.