Scrap recyclers deliver messages to Congress about recycling’s value.
The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries Inc. (ISRI) has reported that more than 100 members of its association took part in ISRI’s 2013 Congressional Fly-In event on July 23. The annual event is designed to allow companies to visit members of Congress to discuss the economic and environmental roles recycling plays.
ISRI says several of the key topics discussed by its members included ways to prevent materials theft, the issue of exporting raw materials processed at recycling facilities and the industry’s development of a curriculum to teach the science of recycling in schools.
“The recycling industry plays a vital role in the environment and economy within every single Congressional district in America,” says Robin Wiener, president of ISRI. “Recyclers are responsible for providing good-paying jobs for members’ constituents, while at the same time conserving valuable preserving landfill space and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Working with Congress, we can further enhance our nation’s recycling capabilities and the many environmental benefits of our industry.”
In supporting its efforts, ISRI recently released an economic impact study that shows the industry provides more than 460,000 direct and indirect jobs in the United States, including 138,000 direct jobs. Both figures mark an increase from when a similar report was done in 2011. The industry generates about $4 billion in state and local revenue annually and $6.3 billion in federal taxes.
Overall, the recycling industry provides for more than .5 percent of the national’s total economic activity, ISRI says.
“As the voice of the recycling industry it is important for ISRI and our members to advocate and build relationships with members of Congress,” says Wiener. “We are grateful to all those members who are working with us to find the most effective ways to reduce metals theft, to strengthen and expand the U.S.-based electronics recycling infrastructure by recognizing the global nature of the industry’s activities, and to teach the science of recycling in schools.”