MassDEP Leads the way on promoting textile recycling
A little more than two years ago Brooke Nash, Branch Manager of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, didn't consider used clothing a recyclable product; then she attended the 2012 MassRecycle annual conference. Ms. Nash sat in on a session at the conference, led by Jeff Pearl representing SMART and Valerie Sweeney of ERC Wiping Products, Inc., which focused on the impact of used clothing on municipal solid waste and the missed opportunities for recycling used clothing and household textiles.
Because she was so unaware of the entire used clothing recycling industry, Ms. Nash asked for a follow-up meeting so she could learn more about the industry and the impact used clothing recycling has not only on municipal solid waste, but also its beneficial impact on the environment. As a result of this second meeting, Ms. Nash was convinced that the promotion of used clothing recycling needed to be added to the agenda of the department.
Today, through the efforts of Ms. Nash, the MassDEP is one of the leading state agencies promoting the recycling of used clothing and household textiles. In a recent message to recycling colleagues, MassDEP highlighted the following clothing recycling efforts:
- School textile programs taking off in MA - 26 districts and more than 180 schools in eastern Massachusetts are now hosting clothing recycling programs
- Recycling Video Focused on clothing created by students - Elementary school students in Beverly, MA produce a 3 minute video promoting the benefits of recycling used clothing and household textiles.
- Textile recycling earns money for schools - All five schools in the Middleboro, MA district now have clothing collection bins. The recycling effort has collected more than 9,500 pounds and earned nearly $500 for the district PTA.
- Four new companies in Massachusetts focus on textile recycling - Recycle That, Community Recycling, Shoebox Recycling or Cyntex are all now operating in Massachusetts, working with municipalities and schools to divert clothing out of the waste stream.
- Massachusetts' Morgan Memorial Goodwill announces expansion of clothing collection network - Morgan Memorial Goodwill announces the opening of four new manned collection centers and the collection of more than 125 tons of donations during its annual school/college donation drive. An estimated 60% of the collections were clothing.
SMART is aware of additional clothing recycling programs now underway in Connecticut, Rhode island, New York, and Maine, many of which can be traced to the pioneering efforts of Brooke Nash and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection. SMART proudly supports all of these programs and encourages the rest of the nation to follow their lead.
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Materials and Recycled Textiles Association
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MassDEP LEADS THE WAY ON PROMOTING TEXTILE RECYCLING
BUZZ LIGHTYEAR AND PINK TEDDY BEAR USED TO STOP THEFTS FROM CLOTHNG COLLECTION BINS
FIRST-EVER JOINT MEETING ON INTERNATIONAL USED CLOTHING INDUSTRY HELD IN MIAMI
SMART ASSOCIATION'S ELEMENTARY EDUCATION PROGRAM CONNECTS WITH STUDENTS AND TEACHERS
SMART TAKES A LOOK AT THE EPA's MOST RECENT REPORT ON SOLID WASTE
SMART ELEMENTARY EDUCATION PROGRAM CONTINUES TO REPORTS STRONG RESULTS
SMART ASSOCIATION CALLS FOR U.S. RETAILERS TO IMPLEMENT USED CLOTHING RECYCLING PROGRAMS
KENTUCKY ATTORNEY GENERAL SUPPORTS SMART ASSOCIATION'S REGULATORY RECOMMENDATIONS
NASCAR EVENT IN PHOENIX INCLUDED USED CLOTHING RECYCLING EFFORT
SMART MEMBER'S GATHER IN PHOENIX TO LEARN ABOUT NEW INITIATIVES IN THE INDUSTRY
RECYCLED CLOTHES RETURN TO RACKS AT NEW PRODUCTS AT H&M
SMART APPLAUDS EXPANSION OF SAN FRANCISCO'S ZERO WASTE PROGRAM TO INCLUDE TEXTILES
2013 BLOG POST ARCHIVE
2012 BLOG POST ARCHIVE