Impact of coronavirus in recycling sector – How much has it affected?

impact of coronavirus in recycling sector

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The impact of coronavirus in recycling sector has been a global downfall on a global scale

The global rise of the coronavirus pandemic has been a huge threat to the recycling programs of North America. It has been a disruption to the Chinese users investing into the U.S recovered fibre, degrading stock prices as well as infusing economic recession.

The outbreak has spread to more than 159 countries, areas and territories where the global death number has risen to nearly 17,000. The U.S government declared a national emergency and the affect of the virus has drastically impacted the daily lives of people.

How cities and companies are reacting?

  • Major municipalities have failed to implement changes due to the impact of coronavirus in recycling service. The Salt Lake city’s sustainability department is making plans for ensuring garbage, recycling and compost containers are collected as usual in case of more widespread infection rates.
  • Some communities are adjusting the recycling collection. In Washington state, the city of Tacoma announced the changes in waste collection for residential and commercial customers. But most of the employees are taking precautionary time off.
  • In California, the Humboldt Waste Management Authority has temporarily closed the collection due to the impact of coronavirus and Social distancing is valued more.
  • Ohio suspended drop-off recycling due to rising concern on contaminated medical waste.
  • Athens suspended curbside recycling as they are unable to staff its facility.
  • Following the confirmed cases in Michigan, the East Lansing Department of Public Works closed its recycling sites.
  • Cities of Vancouver and British Columbia have postponed their drop off recycling and reuse events throughout March and April.

Different companies are also taking measures –

Alaska Airlines halted recyclable collection. The National Waste and Recycling Association (NWRA), Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) implemented practice steps for handling solid waste and recyclables during the pandemic.

Some of the Industry Events That Got Cancelled are –

  • March 18-19 – National Zero Waste Conference
  • March 22-25: International Conference on Solid Waste Technology and Management
  • March 24-26: Plastics Industry Association Board Meeting and Fly-In
  • March 31-April 2: SPC Impact 2020
  • April 27-30: ISRI2020
  • May 14-16: 2020 NAID and PRISM International Conference & Expo

The ones that got Postponed are

  • March 19-21: Kansas Association of Recyclers WORKS Conference postponed to an unannounced date
  • March 23-26: Carolina Recycling Association Annual Conference & Trade Show rescheduled to Aug. 3-7
  • March 23-26: SWANApalooza postponed to an unannounced date
  • March 25-26: Plastics Recycling Show Europe rescheduled to Oct. 27-28
  • April 2: MASSRecycle 2020 Recycling Conference & Trade Show postponed to an unannounced date
  • April 20-21: Northeast Recycling Council (NERC) Spring 2020 Conference rescheduled to Oct. 20-21
  • May 4-7: WasteExpo 2020 rescheduled to Aug. 10-13
  • May 18-20: Bureau of International Recycling World Recycling Convention rescheduled to Oct. 12-14
  • May 18-20: Circularity 20 rescheduled to Aug. 25-27
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