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Industry Looks to Save Waste Minimization and Recycling Program

The program performs important work for the recycling industry as well as companies that use recycled materials.

Resource Recycling has a good write-up chronicling the efforts of recycling organizations to save the U.S. EPA’s Waste Minimization and Recycling program, which is slated to be cut if President Trump’s proposed budget is enacted.

It’s part of the overall 31 percent reduction in the EPA’s budget. Although many experts think the proposed budget is unlikely to pass muster in Congress, industry groups aren’t taking any chances.

Billy Johnson, chief lobbyist for the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), told Resource Recycling that program performs important work for the recycling industry as well as companies that use recycled materials.

ISRI’s goal will be to “make (lawmakers) aware that these programs are really not very much money but they have a terrific impact on manufacturing as well as environmental protection,” Johnson told the publication. “I think they’ll be very willing to listen to that.”

The Congressional Recycling Caucus, a group of Congress members that pushes recycling legislation, also is backing the program.

Resource Recycling has more:

The Congressional Recycling Caucus was formed in 2006 with support from ISRI. In a statement to Resource Recycling, U.S. Rep. John Shimkus, R-Ill., co-chair of the House recycling caucus, noted EPA’s recycling efforts among those that should be prioritized.

“While the administration is absolutely right to request an overall decrease in funding for EPA, it is our responsibility on Capitol Hill to ensure that specific programs are funded at levels consistent with authorizations,” Shimkus said. “As we work through the budget process, Congress should prioritize programs – particularly site remediation, technical assistance, and recycling programs – that not only improve our environment but that also generate economic benefits.”

Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., co-chair on the Senate side, declined to speak to specific cuts because the budget is still only a proposal. In a statement, he noted this is only the beginning of the process, adding that “Congress has the power of the purse.”

Other ranking members of the recycling caucus did not return inquiries.

Read the full story here.

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