|INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana has a new 50% recycling goal and new recycling data reporting requirements which lay the groundwork for significant job creation, energy conservation and natural resource protection.During the 2014 legislative session, State Representative David Wolkins brought these ideas to the table with strong support from Governor Pence, the Indiana Recycling Coalition (IRC), and several Indiana manufacturers and other recycling industry stakeholders. Senator Charbonneau co-authored the bill and facilitated the passage of HB 1183 through the Senate.
“The Indiana Recycling Coalition is thrilled that Indiana will have a 50% recycling goal to strive for and new data reporting to mark progress towards that goal,” said Carey Hamilton, executive director, Indiana Recycling Coalition. “We are thankful to Governor Pence, Representative Wolkins and Senator Charbonneau for their leadership with this groundbreaking recycling legislation, and we look forward to a robust policy discussion – a debate of how best to achieve this new 50% recycling goal – in the months leading up to the 2015 session,” continued Hamilton.
In 2012, the IRC convened a recycling industry stakeholder group that has worked for two years to find common ground on ways to recover more resources from Indiana’s waste stream. That group has discussed the need for data collection and a new state goal as a starting place for more substantive recycling policies.
Several members of that group, namely major manufacturers that use recycled material as feedstock, were particularly strong proponents of HB 1183. “It is an exciting time for recycling in Indiana, as the economic benefits of increased recycling become more clear. The IRC’s landmark 2013 study, The Untapped Jobs Potential of Indiana’s Recycling Industry, brought the economic message to the fore,” stated Hamilton. The environmental benefits of increased recycling, namely resource and energy conservation are already well documented, and with this new economic data, there is a strong case to be made to support recycling investments. Most notably, the study concludes that recycling 25% of what Hoosiers dispose of today would result in the creation of 10,000 new in-state jobs.
The IRC recognizes HB 1183 as a crucial first step towards building Indiana’s recycling industry, turning Indiana’s waste into valuable resources to be mined, processed and marketed to manufacturers in Indiana and beyond, and to creating economic growth in Indiana.
About the Indiana Recycling Coalition
The Indiana Recycling Coalition (IRC) is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization formed in 1989 to support waste reduction, reuse, composting and recycling activities in Indiana. The IRC’s members include state and local governments, business, industry, not-for-profits and individuals. Visit the IRC website at www.indianarecycling.org to learn more.