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  • Tue, January 04, 2022 9:40 AM | Rebecca Rainey

    Into The Green Bin:

    Collecting Food Waste from Institutional Settings

    Hosted by Busch Systems in Partnership with EcoSafe

    Wednesday January 12, 1:00pm - 2:30pm EST (Zoom Webinar)

    With landfilled food waste increasingly seen as a significant source of methane emissions, and states like California and Massachusetts beginning to mandate diversion programs organizations across the US and Canada are moving compost collections to the top of their priority list. Along the way, however, sustainability managers from several sectors are confronting both familiar and novel challenges. What steps can be taken to increase participation and avoid contamination? How does one avoid odors and pests, not to mention inflated perceptions about them. How do you integrate organics recovery with existing food service operations and waste collections?
    This FREE webinar will feature a panel of veteran program managers from a range of different institutions sharing the lessons they’ve learned through case study presentations and an extended panel discussion.

    Register HERE: Webinar - Into The Green Bin | Collecting Food Waste (

  • Thu, November 11, 2021 9:09 AM | Brittany Rosenberg (Administrator)

    On Nov 11, the STAR Board of Directors voted unanimously to send the following documents to Texas Lawmakers for consideration during the session interim:

    STAR TX RMDP One Page Overview

    STAR - Letter of Transmittal - Interim Charge

    STAR Proposed Senate Interim Charges

    STAR Proposed House of Representatives Interim Charges 

    These documents were developed with great help from the STAR Business Council and STAR Board Policy Committee and were informed by comments from STAR membership, STAR affiliates, and other Texas recycling industry stakeholders. 

    To submit an informal comment or question over the Texas Recycling Market Development Plan, fill out this form

    Click here to read the Texas Recycling Market Development Plan in full. 

  • Wed, September 01, 2021 12:24 PM | Brittany Rosenberg (Administrator)

    Join us for two in-depth sessions over the RMDP at Summit 2021!

    The Recycling Market Development Plan

    The RMDP provides tools and mechanisms that can be utilized by state and local governments to address identified barriers, opportunities and infrastructure needs to increase the overall recycling rate. This includes both material specific and cross-material strategies for market development.

    S.B. 649

    This Study was required by Senate Bill 649 Exit the TCEQ of the 86th Legislature.

    About the Study

    The TCEQ hired Burns & McDonnell to conduct a study on the promotion of using recyclable materials as feedstock in processing and manufacturing; produce a Recycling Materials Development Plan (RMDP) and educational suggestions and materials; and other activities that meet the requirements included in Senate Bill 649.

    The overall impact of recycling MSW on the Texas economy exceeded $4.8 billion in 2019. This puts the recycling industry on par with both the petroleum and furniture industries in Texas. 

    The above information is available from the Texas Commission on Environmantal Quality at

  • Fri, July 16, 2021 12:43 PM | Tamara Kowalski




    Contact: Frank Franciosi,


    Raleigh, NC — The US Composting Council and the U.S. Composting Infrastructure Coalition applauds Representatives Julia Brownley (D-CA-26), Chellie Pingree (D-ME-01), and Ann Kuster (D-NH-02), for introducing the Cultivating Organic Matter through the Promotion of Sustainable Techniques (COMPOST) Act in the U.S. House of Representatives and introduced by Senator Cory Booker in the U.S. Senate. 

    The COMPOST Act meets the growing demand from individuals and businesses to compost food scraps and certified compostable packaging. Assisting the transition to a circular economy, the COMPOST Act would create new USDA grant and loan guarantee programs for composting infrastructure projects, including large-scale composting facilities as well as farm, home, or community-based projects. The bill would add composting as a conservation practice for USDA conservation programs. Both the act of producing compost from organic waste and using compost on a farm would qualify as conservation practices. This bill addresses a critical need for regions and communities around the country looking to expand access to food waste composting, an important step to lead the shift to net-zero. 

    “Implementing innovative and responsible waste solutions like composting serves as an opportunity to address key environmental challenges and bring positive economic impacts to people and communities. While there is still significant need for robust investment in composting infrastructure, the COMPOST Act is a critical step in the right direction,” said Jessica Bowman, Executive Director of the Plant Based Products Council, a member of the Coalition. 

    “By investing in composting infrastructure, we can help address our climate crisis, create local jobs and improve both our agricultural and urban soils,” said Frank Franciosi, Executive Director of the U.S. Composting Council, a member of the Coalition. “The benefits of increased compost production include reduced volumes of organic materials flowing to landfills, lowered methane emissions, sequestering carbon back into the soil and closing the loop on a circular economy.” 

    “A massive investment in composting infrastructure is needed for rural and urban America. Composting can restore depleted soils, protect the climate and create thousands of new jobs. We won’t see these benefits if we don’t help farmers, entrepreneurs, and local government build needed systems and programs,” said Brenda Platt, Director of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance’s Composting for Community Project, a member of the Coalition. 

    "Lack of widespread food scrap collection and processing infrastructure is one of the biggest barriers to the growth and success of the compostable products industry," notes Rhodes Yepsen, Executive Director of Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) and Coalition member. "Compostable products, unlike recyclables, are not collected on their own. They are collected as part of a broader organics stream that includes food scraps. USCIC partners estimated that it would take about $2 billion to expand compost access nationally, which is why the Act is calling for this level of funding.”


    The U.S. Composting Infrastructure Coalition brings together a cross-section of industry leaders to promote increased investment in composting infrastructure.

    Learn more about the U.S. Composting Infrastructure Coalition at or write to us at

  • Thu, July 15, 2021 4:27 PM | Tamara Kowalski


    (ILSR press release)

    FOR RELEASE: July 15, 2021

    Washington, D.C. – The Recycling Is Infrastructure Too Campaign released its first Recycling Infrastructure Plan today.  There are a total of 50 initiatives and requests for funding of $3.3 billion in physical infrastructure, and $3.3 billion for Infrastructure Support Policies and Programs for the first year. Over a three year period, the Plan recommends a total investment of $16.3 billion. The National Recycling Coalition (NRC), the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) and Zero Waste USA issued a request for the inclusion of “waste reduction, reuse, recycling and composting that will stem climate disruption, address racial justice, and create thousands of jobs throughout the country” in a March 31st press release. This Recycling Infrastructure Plan is the follow-up, with detailed policies and programs that should be included in the infrastructure discussions on Capitol Hill. 

    Recycling Infrastructure Needs

    “The Plan  presents the following Recycling Infrastructure initiatives, brought forward by a coalition of national reuse, recycling and composting experts, local government organizations and environmental leaders that desire to strengthen our national recycling infrastructure,” stated Richard Anthony, Vice President for Advocacy of Zero Waste USA. These initiatives are presented as investments in physical infrastructure, and then needed investments in supporting infrastructure needed to maximize the efficiency and use of these physical investments. 

     “Adding billions of dollars in economic activity to the American economy each year, the recycling circular economy is in its infancy, while recycling infrastructure is fractured and in need of repair much like U.S. bridges and road systems,” stated Bob Gedert, NRC President. With a combination of investments in physical infrastructure (like collection vehicles, carts and processing facilities) and supporting infrastructure (e.g. policies, programs, education and training), the American recycling infrastructure will grow significantly beyond the economic strength it currently is, creating the circular economy described by the Ellen Macarthur Foundation and already accomplished in large part in China. 

    Gedert further noted: “The dollar estimates for each initiative are for the first year of a proposed 3-year investment strategy. The focus for these investments is on one-time expenses that would modernize the industry, and then be sustainable thereafter based on fees for services. The recommended funding source for this infrastructure investment could continue to help fund supporting infrastructure thereafter, and also be used to help fund other climate change initiatives.” 

    Proposed Funding for Recycling Infrastructure

    Ruth Abbe, President of Zero Waste USA highlighted that “this Plan also provides for innovative funding mechanisms for this infrastructure investment, to avoid the need  to be supported solely by the General Fund of the U.S. Government. Many European nations have adopted significant fees on landfills of $20-40/ton to fund recycling programs and reduce greenhouse gases. This proposal recommends that the Federal government adopt a national $20/ton Producer Responsibility  Fee on landfills and incinerators to help fund the above programs and contribute a new revenue source that would actually help meet the nation’s Climate Change goals at the same time.” 

    Gedert noted that “Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) programs that hold producers fiscally responsible, but not physically responsible, for the proper management of products and packaging they produce according to the Zero Waste Hierarchy of Highest and Best Use are suggested to be used for hard to recycle items.” National or State level EPR programs should require a local government reimbursement from industry fees because local governments bear the first line of expense of products' end-of-life management costs.  

    These EPR programs provide their own funding for the development of needed infrastructure, so should be considered as self-contained, fully funded infrastructure programs. These programs don’t require a Federal investment of financial capital. Instead, these just require a Federal investment of political capital to establish these programs.  

    Neil Seldman from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance noted “There are also 5 Initiatives that reduce or eliminate Federal subsidies and will stimulate the development of infrastructure, once the marketplace adjusts. As a result, these should be considered as contributing to offsetting the cost of some of the proposed infrastructure investments. These programs reduce Federal investments of financial capital.” 

    Seldman continued “Other funding sources could include a fee on non-recyclable packaging and products that are toxic to the environment or create needless waste.” Examples include but are not limited to disposable floor cleaning pads, paper towels, and mercury switches in sneakers to create light.

    Recycling Infrastructure Plan Webinar

    Join on July 27th at 2 - 3:30 pm EDT  to hear more details about this Recycling Infrastructure Plan. Register for this FREE Webinar and to get a link to the Plan at:

  • Mon, June 14, 2021 2:00 PM | Nia Nickens

    The 2021 Texas Environmental Leadership Awards Call for Nominations is Now Open!

    APPLICATIONS CLOSE at 5pm CDT on friday, JUly 16, 2021


    Submit Nominations Here

    STAR is pleased to announce the call for nominations for the 2021 Texas Environmental Leadership Awards. Nominate your favorite Texas recycling or composting advocate, program, or event before the 5pm deadline on July 16th!

    These awards recognize true stewards of environmental change in Texas – individuals, communities, organizations, and businesses developing and maintaining programs involving recycling, composting, sustainable materials management, public education and outreach, special event recycling – and so much more.

    This year, STAR is combining its regional award categories into one large statewide Texas Environmental Leadership Awards competition. 

    * STAR members who are nominated will receive an additional 5 points toward their score!

    This year's awards categories are:

    • Outstanding Public Outreach & Environmental Outreach
    • The Cis Myers Sustainability Leadership Award
    • Extraordinary Recycling Special Event
    • Exceptional Recycling Partnership
    • Excellence in Environmental Awareness Education
    • Innovative Compost or Greenscaping Program
    • Superior Material Recovery
    • Volunteer Recognition – Humanitarians of the Year  

    Winners will be announced at an Awards Ceremony and Dinner on Thursday, October 7th, as part of Summit 2021 in-person events in Granbury, TX.

    See more about the 2021 Texas Recycling Summit

  • Fri, May 28, 2021 3:20 PM | Tamara Kowalski

    STAR Business Council Releases Video to Texas Lawmakers on RMDP

    See video on STAR's new YouTube channel

    On May 25th, 2021, the STAR Business Council released a video addressing lawmakers in the 87th Texas Legislature expressing continued support for the creation of the Recycling Market Development Plan (RMDP). The video features STAR partners and recycling stakeholders who state their own impact on the recycling industry in Texas and the importance of recycling to the Texas economy as a whole. They encourage support and action on the Plan’s recommendations when released in September 2021. (See more about the RMDP on our website here.)

    The goal of the RMDP is to examine the current recycling economy in Texas, discover opportunities for growth, and draft a proposal for action. It also includes the creation of a comprehensive educational campaign to cover the economics of recycling in Texas, highlight businesses that are involved in recycling in Texas, and to reduce contamination. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) retained Burns & McDonnell to complete the project, and STAR is working with them to complete these goals.

  • Tue, May 18, 2021 5:30 PM | Tamara Kowalski

    Vote for Board of Directors and Council Steering Committees by COB May 26th!

    BOD Election Ballot 

    Steering Committee Election Ballot 

    Voting is now open for both STAR Council Steering Committees and open Board of Director positions! Ballots will close on May 26th at 5pm CDT. All current members in good standing may use the links above to vote.

    Election results will be announced at the STAR Annual Members Meeting, held virtually on Thursday, May 27th at 10am. STAR Executive Director Brittany Rosenberg will also give a 2021 State of the Alliance at this meeting. Only current STAR members and incoming members of the NTCRA in good standing may attend. Verify your STAR membership status by logging into our website HERE (incoming NTCRA members not included).

    Thank you for your support and participation in these important annual elections. We look forward to working with you in the coming year to further our mission of advancing recycling through partnerships, education, and advocacy for the benefit of Texas.

  • Thu, May 06, 2021 12:33 PM | Tamara Kowalski

    Texas Recycling Summit 2021
    Call for Proposals


    Submit Your Speaker Proposals Here


    STAR is excited to announce that we will be hosting the 2021 Texas Recycling Summit on October 5th–8th! Summit 2021 will be a hybrid event with speakers and sessions held virtually during the first two days, with a limited number of in-person events on the last 2 days—at the beautiful Lake Granbury Conference Center in Granbury, Texas! In-person events include the Texas Environmental Leadership Awards, a live auction, and networking and games. (More details coming soon!)

    We are seeking speakers, presenters, panelists, and workshop leaders for new topic proposals, as well as experts on the topics listed below. We invite you to submit a proposal through the link above if you are:

    1. Interested in speaking, presenting, or being on a panel; or 
    2. If you are a STAR member, affiliate, stakeholder, or former Summit attendee and would like to submit a session topic request.

    Summit has been Texas's premier recycling conference for more than 20 years and we're excited to once again feature engaging sessions on relevant and timely topics. We anticipate this year's Texas Recycling Summit to attract more than 300 recycling professionals from municipalities, local and state government, private industry, higher education, and NGOs/trade associations.

    We are seeking experts on the following topics:

    • Recycling Market Development
    • Recycling and Solid Waste Legislation
    • Entrepreneurship, Technology & Innovation
    • Regional Economic Development, Circular Economy Development, & Job Creation
    • Public & Private Partnership Success Stories
    • Industrial Recycling, Reuse, and Redevelopment (ex: Rockets, Anaerobic Digestion, Brownfields, etc.)
    • Byproducts as Feedstocks
    • New or Niche Material Markets (ex: Fiberglass, Fabrics, Batteries, etc.)
    • Public Education Success Stories
    • How to start a ....Program (workshops)
    • COVID-19 and Pandemic-related Updates
    Please contact us at with any questions.

    Thank you for your proposals. We look forward to making this the best Summit yet!

  • Thu, April 22, 2021 1:25 PM | Tamara Kowalski

    On April 13th, the STAR Business Council advanced letters to Texas Governor Greg Abbott and each member of the 87th Texas Legislature expressing continued support for the creation of the Recycling Market Development Plan (RMDP). The letter addresses the importance of recycling to the Texas economy and encourages support and action on the Plan’s recommendations when released in September 2021. (See more about the RMDP on our website here.)

    The letter also points to the recycling industry's more than $3 billion dollars in economic impact for Texas and the potential for exponential growth under the Plan. A one-pager attached to the letter shared some important industry facts and figures, and the benefits and opportunities provided by the RMDP (accessible here). The letter's intention was to remind the Governor and legislators that the RMDP will be released in September and to look forward to those results.

    The goal of the RMDP is to examine the current recycling economy in Texas, discover opportunities for growth, and draft a proposal for action. It also includes the creation of a comprehensive educational campaign to cover the economics of recycling in Texas, highlight businesses that are involved in recycling in Texas, and to reduce contamination. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) retained Burns & McDonnell to complete the project, and STAR is working with them to complete these goals. 

    See the full letter to the Governor below or as pdf here.

    Dear Governor Abbott:

    RE: Recycling Market Development Plan

    The State of Texas Alliance for Recycling (STAR) thanks you for your continued support of the creation of the Recycling Market Development Plan, which passed in the 86th Legislative Session, and which is due for release in Q3 of 2021.

    STAR members and stakeholders look forward to continued collaboration with the State and are optimistic that the upcoming recycling plan will identify growth opportunities for both business and industry that could result in more jobs, new technology, infrastructure, manufacturing, and investment for Texas.

    Some of these opportunities will require future legislative action and STAR hopes we can count on your support of those efforts in the 88th Legislative Session, for an industry that has demonstrated over $3 billion dollars in economic impact for Texas.

    Please see the attached brief which demonstrates enthusiastic participation from both the private and public sectors and offers valuable insight into the solutions for the challenges facing the recycling industry of Texas.

    We look forward to working with you, if we may be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us.


    Gigi Gephardt
    Chair | STAR Business Council

    Brittany Rosenberg
    Executive Director | STAR

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