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Need to Know

Live Thrive Atlanta’s CHaRM Awarded Foam Recycling Coalition Grant

polystyrene foam
The Center for Hard to Recycle Materials targets funding to expand the facility’s foam polystyrene recycling operations.

The Foam Recycling Coalition awarded a $41,000 grant to Live Thrive Atlanta’s Center for Hard to Recycle Materials (CHaRM). The funding will help expand the facility’s foam polystyrene recycling operation and continue improving the environmental and public health of Metro Atlanta by diverting hazardous waste and recyclables from local landfills. With this grant, CHaRM will buy a foam polystyrene densifier for its recycling drop-off site, allowing the organization to process foam polystyrene onsite.

CHaRM’s site accepts a wide range of hard-to-recycle and commonly recycled items. It will now accept foam polystyrene cups, takeout containers, meat trays and egg cartons, as well as protective packaging. The densifier being purchased with the grant money will compact these foam materials into condensed bricks that the county can ship to recycling markets in truckload quantities.

“CHaRM is the type of a mission-driven organization that we like to partner with to help its work in advancing foam polystyrene recovery in the region,” said Lynn Dyer, president of the Foodservice Packaging Institute, which houses the coalition, in a statement. “CHaRM provides a unique service to the region by taking materials not currently accepted at curbside, and the densifier will enhance that service and divert a large amount of foam from landfill disposal.”

“Foam polystyrene is one of the most important hard-to-recycle materials received at the facility’s drop-off [site]. Being able to increase processing of this material and be more efficient in selling to end markets will make it easier to provide our services to the residents and universities of Metro Atlanta,” said Peggy Whitlow Ratcliffe, executive director of Live Thrive Atlanta, in a statement.

The grant is made possible through contributions to the FRC, which focuses exclusively on increased recycling of post-consumer foam polystyrene. Its members include Americas Styrenics; Cascades Canada ULC; CKF, Inc.; Chick-fil-A; Dart Container Corp.; Dyne-A-Pak; Genpak; Hawaii Foam Products; INEOS Styrolution America, LLC; NOVA Chemicals Corp.; Pactiv Foodservice/Food Packaging; Republic Plastics; and TOTAL Petrochemicals & Refining USA.

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