At NPE2015, 82 exhibitors participated in the program to recycle processing scrap generated on the show floor, twice as many as at NPE2012, causing a dramatic increase in the amount of material collected for recycling.
Commercial Plastics Recycling, the official recycling company for NPE2015, collected, sorted and recycled 191 tons of processing scrap, which was 62 percent more than was collected at NPE2012 and 235 percent more than at NPE2009. As the show has grown and the amount of scrap has increased, the recycling program has increased its capacity, ensuring plastics scrap is being managed properly.
“We reached out to exhibitors well in advance of NPE2015 to find out their needs and get a clear idea of how we should prepare,” says Paul Benvenuti of CPR. “Another big help was having our containers and trucks on site during setup since machines were being operated and generating scrap well before the start of the show.”
Altogether, NPE2015 generated 518 tons of waste at the Orange County Convention Center, including both processing scrap and post-consumer waste. Of the total, 452 tons, or 87 percent, was recycled. CPR reclaimed the processing scrap at its recycling facility in Tampa, Fla., and through a contract carrier, the Orange County Convention Center arranged for recycling of post-consumer waste. All of this was driven by NPE’s Recycling Committee, comprised of representatives from companies exhibiting at NPE2015, and SPI’s director of operations, Lori Campbell.
“SPI and the plastics industry’s commitment to reduce, reuse, or recycle was a significant focus of the show, and we believe our recycling efforts were a realization of that commitment,” says Bill Carteaux, SPI’s president and CEO. “As the leading trade event in plastics, we needed to model the appropriate behavior, and thanks to the efforts of our recycling program partners, we were able to do just that.”
These successful efforts at NPE2015 have led to an industry call for SPI to launch a new annual event to help brand owners, processors, and the plastics supply chain take its environmental goals from aspirational to operational. The new event, Re|focus Summit and Expo, will provide education and solutions on plastics reduction, reuse, and recycling as well as sustainable practices in plastics design and manufacturing. Re|focus will be held April 25-27, 2016 in Orlando, Fla. General conference information and exhibit information is available at www.refocussummit.org, with additional details and registration to come in early July.