EREF Blog

Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) Launches Survey of Anaerobic Digestion Facilities

Click here for a PDF of this release.

Data will be used for tracking waste generation in the U.S., tracking resource consumption, estimation of emissions, and evaluation of waste management-related policies.

Raleigh, NC (April 22, 2021) – The Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF), a non-profit organization that funds research, data and educational programs that advance the science surrounding waste, has launched a comprehensive survey to better understand the amount and type of waste being managed by anaerobic digestion (AD) facilities.

In previous EREF work on anaerobic digestion, 25 stand-alone AD facilities processing municipal solid waste (MSW) were identified across 13 states and 156 co-digestion of MSW facilities were identified across 27 states. EREF estimated that these facilities processed 784,037 tons of MSW in 2013, but researchers expect that number has increased.

“Anaerobic digestion plays a critical role in the present and future direction of solid waste management,” says Bryan Staley, Ph.D., P.E., EREF’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “It’s important to have a complete view of the entire waste management landscape, which includes AD.”

The project involves several stages.

The first stage will collect data directly from all types of AD facilities that digest MSW including: stand-alone, on-farm and wastewater treatment plants. Information to be collected will include the quantity of waste accepted in calendar years 2016 and 2019, waste sources (such as residential, commercial, etc.) and maximum processing capacity.

The second stage consists of aggregating and analyzing the data collected. EREF will aggregate data by state, region, and nationally. Data will also be analyzed for spatial (e.g. state, regional) and temporal trends in the U.S.

The survey of anaerobic digestion facilities is part of a larger effort by EREF to update its 2016 report on Municipal Solid Waste Management in the U.S.: 2010 & 2013. Throughout this effort researchers will be collecting data from landfills, waste-to-energy facilities (WTE), recycling facilities, composting operations, and AD facilities. Facility-specific data will be collected through state agencies and direct facility contact for waste collected in calendar years 2016 and 2019.

The non-profit organization is seeking stand-alone facilities that digest MSW and on-farm and wastewater treatment plants that co-digest MSW that accepted MSW in 2016 or 2019 to participate in the project.

If a facility is interested in participating, the survey is available at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/GQWMMW3. If a facility representative would like to take the survey over the phone or learn more about the survey, please contact Suzie Boxman, Ph.D. at sboxman@erefdn.org.

About EREF
EREF has a long history of aggregating pertinent waste-related data and facilitating research. More than 25 years old, the organization has provided more than $16 million dollars in research grants and has conducted numerous data studies. For example, EREF’s annual Tip Fee report is widely distributed and used by a variety of entities, including financial analysts, municipalities, government agencies, and waste industry professionals.

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Media Contact:

Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109
Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

Supporting Solid Waste Science through the EREF Auction

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The Environmental Research & Education Foundation’s (EREF) Annual Charitable Auction is back in 2021 to raise support for the Foundation’s mission to drive sustainable solid waste management practices forward.

This event, which moved virtual in 2020 due to COVID-19, is the Foundation’s largest fundraiser. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, sponsors, bidders and volunteers, the 2020 Auction saw its 2nd highest net in its more than 25-year history – a milestone serving as a catalyst for EREF to fund more research, students and education opportunities!

Due to COVID-19, the Auction will once again look different than it has in the past with the event being held virtually through EREF’s online bidding platform, GiveSmart. Bidders will have the opportunity to peruse items and register to bid online leading up to the start of the Auction.

EREF’s Auction consists of two parts: a Live Auction and a Silent Auction. The Live Auction features larger items including trucks, large equipment and outings with industry executives, while the Silent Auction features smaller items including experiences, electronics, sports memorabilia and more.

Auction Bidding and Schedule

While the Live Auction will be virtual this year, EREF will have a presence on the WasteExpo 2021 show floor where we’ll highlight the progress of the Auction. The Silent Auction will remain online as it has in years past.

Bidding for both the Live and Silent Auctions will begin on June 16, less than two weeks before WasteExpo, culminating with the end of the show on June 30. All bidding will take place on GiveSmart. More information on registration, bidding and items will be released as it’s available.

How can you participate?

  • Donate! Donors receive visibility via GiveSmart, e-mail promotions and social media.
  • While the event will take place virtually, EREF will have a WasteExpo presence; therefore, sponsorships can be virtual or in-person to provide visibility to your company.
  • Why not go home with one (two, or three) amazing items from the EREF Auction? More bidding information to come.
  • Spread the word. Take to social media to share the Auction or spread the word about your donation through our donor marketing kit.

Proceeds from the EREF Auction help to drive sustainable solid waste management forward. EREF accomplishes its mission through its core programs: Research Grants, Scholarships, Data & Policy and Education. Additional information on these programs and more are available at erefdn.org.

For just a snippet of the research and education opportunities that the Foundation is up to in 2021, click here.

Make sure to stop by EREF’s booth at WasteExpo to learn more about the Foundation and its Auction!

Donations are still accepted and sponsorships are available! Questions about how you can participate? Contact EREF’s Events Manager, Caitlin Conklin, via e-mail at cconklin@erefdn.org.

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

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Media Contact:

Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109
Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

EREF Study Shows Average MSW Tip Fee Decreased in 2020

Results from the 2020 EREF analysis of MSW landfill tip fees indicate a 3 percent decrease in the national average to $53.72 per ton.

EREF recently completed its 4th annual MSW landfill tip fee report. Using its database of 1,540 active Subtitle D municipal solid waste landfills (MSWLFs) in the U.S., the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) created a sample of facilities that was used for surveying landfill owners regarding tip fee information for MSW disposal.

The 2020 results indicate the national average tip fee of $53.72 per ton was 3 percent lower than the $55.36 per ton reported in 2019. In 2020, the fees for the Midwest and Mountains/Plains regions converged and were nearly the same at $47.85 and $47.83, respectively. The Pacific and the Northeast continue to have the highest fees per ton in the U.S., but the Pacific saw a decrease of $1.00 per ton, or 1.4 percent, and the Northeast increased $2.16 per ton, or 3.25 percent. The Mountains/Plains region had the greatest change in fees this year ($2.88 per ton, minus 5.7 percent). The table below indicates average tip fee by region.

EREF’s regional analysis indicates tip fees can vary widely regionally across the U.S. The 2020 report also shows that there are large variations within each region and within individual states. To assess the variability within an individual state, EREF performed a sensitivity analysis on the relationship between population and tip fees in North Carolina. Metropolitan areas (U.S. Census statistical areas consisting of a county or counties with at least one urban area and a population of at least 50,000) had the lowest tip fees with an average of $37.99 per ton and was lower than the state average of $45.97 per ton. Tip fees in the less populated areas of the state, those not in a metropolitan or micropolitan area, were greater than the state average at $57.77 per ton. While a larger population and associated increase in waste generation could have an impact on tip fees, additional statistical analyses suggest a limited relationship between population and tip fees and that other factors are more influential.

EREF’s free report, “Analysis of MSW Landfill Tipping Fees: 2020,” shares additional 2020 tipping fee data.

EREF’s New Science Sessions Puts a Conversational Twist on Solid Waste Education

Click here for a PDF of this release.

Raleigh, NC (January 7, 2021) – The Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) is excited to announce the inception of a new solid waste education series entitled EREF Science Sessions, which will kick off in mid-January.

In a time when interactions occur primarily online and Zoom fatigue has become a real concern, the Science Sessions aim to provide the content solid waste professionals need in brief, interactive segments lasting around 45 minutes to an hour.

These sessions will take a variety of forms, forgoing the typical presentation/webinar- style and opting for more interactive models such as interviews, panels and Q&A.

The first set of topics centers on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and emerging contaminants. While data and information surrounding the topic abounds, each session aims to bring new content to the table and focus on the role of the waste industry in the PFAS and emerging contaminants conversation.

Currently, 8 sessions have been confirmed with more anticipated to be lined up. Subtopics include:

  • Industry perspectives on PFAS management
  • PFAS policy
  • Management strategies
  • PFAS concentrations in domestic wastewater and leachate
  • Effective leachate treatment methods
  • PFAS stabilization and solidification
  • Exposure and health implications
  • And more to come!

While PFAS is the focus of the initial set of sessions, other topics will be added to the docket later in 2021.

EREF’s first session, entitled In the Room When It Happened: Industry Perspectives on PFAS, will be a panel comprised of Joe Benco (Republic Services), Sam Nicolai (Casella Waste) and David Pepper (GFL Environmental). This session will be held January 21 at 1 pm ET – registration is open!

Visit the EREF website to learn more and register.

Looking for a value-driven way to build your brand awareness? Become a Science Sessions sponsor! Sponsors receive a select amount of attendee spots with their sponsorship. Send an e-mail to events@erefdn.org to sponsor or learn more.

Thank you to our current Science Sessions sponsors, Golder and Republic Services!

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

 

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Media Contact:

Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager

Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109

Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

Join the Over 250 Respondents Providing Data Related to Scrap and Materials Recovery Facility Fires

Raleigh, NC (November 12, 2020) – The Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF), in partnership with the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI), the National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) and the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), requests responses to a survey aiming to understand the frequency and causes of fires at scrap facilities, materials recovery facilities (MRFs) and other facilities.

Currently, EREF has received more than 250 responses from a number of companies, including responses from top waste management companies. EREF seeks to double this response by December 31 and encourages anyone who has not participated in this effort to ensure your facility is counted by contributing data. Data will be presented in a compiled form and individual facility names, addresses and contact information will not be shared.

What do the preliminary findings of this study indicate?

  • 68% of facilities that responded experienced at least one fire within the past year.
  • 97% of respondents have a fire plan and offer training for employees.
  • The most common types of fire prevention strategies implemented by MRFs and scrap facilities include using a portable fire extinguisher, 24-hour remote monitoring and automatic sprinkler systems.

To complete the survey, or for more information, please click here. The survey will close December 31, 2020.

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

 

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Media Contact:
Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109
Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

EREF Awards Two Grants for Solid Waste Research

Click here for a PDF of this release.

Raleigh, NC (October 29, 2020) – The Board of Directors of the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) are pleased to announce the award of 2 new research grants.

The following projects have been funded in 2020:

Non-Recyclable Plastics to Pavements
Investigator: University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
Award Amount: $161,075

This research seeks to create high-value and high-volume products from plastic waste for bitumen (asphalt binder) replacement in pavements. The bitumen replacement market is a potential repurposing for large quantities of waste plastics. It addresses an urgent economic and environmental need for plastic recycling as well as the transportation industry. With 4-5% replacement of bitumen, this market has the potential to consume 1 million tons of waste plastics out of the 26 million tons that go to landfills in the US. Also, the study goal is aligned with the global emphasis on enhancing transportation infrastructure sustainability. Moreover, asphalt pavements are 100% recyclable; therefore, plastic waste will remain in a recycling circular loop. Plastic waste that would typically be landfilled will be formulated for incorporation in bitumen that meets performance specifications for durability. Through manipulation of the chemical and molecular composition of waste plastics, current challenges, including sorting and processing of different plastics, storage instability and compatibility between bitumen and various plastics will be addressed.

The objectives of this study are as follows:

  1. Develop compatibility and blending methodology of various plastic waste plastic for bitumen modification.
  2. Investigate the suitability of plastic types and mixed plastics for modifying bitumen.
  3. Determine the storage stability of plastic waste modified bitumen.
  4. Perform chemical and rheological characterization of plastic-modified bitumen.
  5. Quantify environmental benefits using life cycle assessment (LCA) for plastic-modified bitumen.

Techno-Economic Evaluation of Supercritical Water Oxidation
for Landfill Leachate and Condensate Management

Investigator: Duke University
Award Amount: $152,000

Landfill leachate and condensate management can be a major cost of operating a landfill and they are an important contingent liability. For example, per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are now found in many landfills and cause great concerns to owners and operators. Supercritical water oxidation (SCWO) is a game-changing treatment technology that could provide superior treatment with better economics. Deshusses’ lab is leading the U.S. in SCWO technology research.

The objectives of this project are to demonstrate the technical and economic feasibility of using SCWO at landfills by:

  1. Demonstrating treatment of representative landfill leachates, condensates and concentrated liquids, such as leachate reverse osmosis (RO) concentrate, in our pilot 1 ton/day SCWO system with specific focus on PFAS and emerging contaminants.
  2. Conducting a detailed economic analysis of using SCWO at landfills at a larger scale. This will include an early assessment of scale and SCWO system throughout. If this assessment indicates that concentration of leachates and condensates (e.g., using reverse osmosis) followed by SCWO is the preferred route for treatment, the project will focus on treatment of concentrated liquids such as RO leachate concentrates.
  3. Exploring treatment synergies (e.g., hazardous wastes, PFAS contaminated sludge, selected organic wastes) that may be co-treated with leachate/condensate or RO concentrates and that may affect the economic outcome.

Pre-proposals are required prior to submitting a full proposal. EREF invites investigators to submit pre-proposals pertaining to the topics outlined on the “How to Apply for a Grant” page on EREF’s website. The next pre-proposal deadline is December 1, 2020. For more information regarding EREF’s Research Grants Program, please visit erefdn.org or e-mail proposals@erefdn.org.

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

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Media Contact:
Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109
Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

NWRA, EREF Publish ‘Waste & Recycling For Dummies’

Click here for a PDF of this release.

The Book Serves as a Professional and Educational Resource for All.

Raleigh, NC (October 27, 2020) – The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) and the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) have partnered to produce Waste & Recycling For Dummies, an informative and educational book for industry professionals, government officials, students and consumers.

While many have a basic understanding (or some assumptions) about the waste and recycling industry, NWRA and EREF unveil a clearer picture of how the entire industry works in Waste & Recycling For Dummies, hoping that readers take a look at their own actions and see what they can do to leave the world in a better place than they found it.

As readers turn the pages of the book, they will learn the importance of the industry and how managing waste properly can help protect human health and the environment. Without proper waste management, our air, land and water can become polluted, and our climate can change for the worse. Recycling helps preserve our natural resources for future generations.

“It was important to us to tell the right story about the waste and recycling industry,” said NWRA President and CEO Darrell Smith. “There is a lot of inaccurate information out there, and this book helps address those misunderstandings and provide a detailed look inside the inner workings of our industry. Our industry goes way beyond the curb.”

“The nuances of waste management concepts in many ways are unknown by most and are often overlooked by those not intimately familiar with this industry,” said EREF President and CEO Bryan Staley. “Our hope is to build an interest and understanding of solid waste that encourages consideration of waste that’s produced and discarded.”

This book also includes insights from many industry subject matter experts (SME). NWRA and EREF express their gratitude for the SMEs’ help putting this book together for publication.

Waste & Recycling For Dummies comes in both a digital and print version (note: print copies are limited). To download the e-book, click here. To request a print copy, please contact Mallory Szczepanski at mszczepanski@wasterecycling.org or Catherine Ardoin at cardoin@erefdn.org.

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About NWRA
The National Waste & Recycling Association (NWRA) is the largest trade association representing the private sector waste and recycling services industry. Association members conduct business in all 50 states, and include companies that manage waste, recycling and medical waste, equipment manufacturers and distributors, and a variety of other service providers. For more information about NWRA, please visit www.wasterecycling.org.

Media Contact:
Brandon Wright, Vice President, Communications and Media Relations
443-758-5542
bwright@wasterecycling.org

 

About EREF
EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

Media Contact:
Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
919.861.6876 ext. 109
cardoin@erefdn.org

 

EREF Awards Nine Master’s and Doctoral Scholarships for 2020

Click here for a PDF of this release.

Raleigh, NC (October 22, 2020) – The Board of Directors of the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) are pleased to announce the award of nine scholarships to Master’s and Doctoral students pursuing education and research in solid waste management.

Congratulations to the 2020 EREF Scholars:

Ryan Anderson
Colorado State University, Ph.D.
EREF Scholar 2020
Advancing a Novel Anaerobic Digestion Process for Producing Fatty Acids from Solid Wastes

When solid waste undergoes anaerobic digestion methane is generated, which can be used for energy. However, Anderson’s work investigates a potentially more valuable anaerobic digestion product than methane. When operating an anaerobic digester at a low pH, methane production is inhibited, leaving fatty acids in the reactor. These fatty acids can be used to make useful chemicals, bioproducts and even plastics.

Seth Kane
Montana State University, Ph.D.
EREF Scholar 2020
Treatment of Plastic Waste for Concrete Reinforcement to Increase Viability of Plastic Recycling in Rural Areas

A potential use for lower value plastic waste is to employ it as an aggregate in concrete. However, a limitation in doing this is that a decrease in the strength of the concrete has been observed. To address this problem, Kane’s research aims to develop methods to reinforce concrete with plastics that improve the strength, resist fracture and decrease damage from freeze-thaw cycles when compared to non-reinforced cement. In addition, as concrete is most often produced locally, this can provide a local option for plastic waste reuse in remote and rural areas where high transportation costs can make plastic recycling costly. Additionally, this provides options to reuse mixed plastic type, contaminated and otherwise hard to recycle plastic waste at a lower cost than traditional recycling.

Kameron King
Old Dominion University, Ph.D.
EREF Scholar 2020
Co-Digestion of Food Waste and the Aqueous Phase from Hydrothermal Carbonization of Mixed MSW

In 2017, the United States Environmental Protection Agency reported that Americans generated over 268 million tons of municipal solid waste (MSW); with 44 million tons of food waste each year – which can be a key source of energy via the methane generation potential this waste holds. A potential strategy to utilize waste as a resource is the integration of two processes – hydrothermal carbonization (HTC) and anaerobic digestion (AD). When the waste is broken down through HTC, hydrochar, gas and an aqueous waste are produced. Both the hydrochar and gas can be recovered, but the aqueous waste must still be treated. King’s research investigates the use of AD to convert the aqueous waste to recoverable, methane-rich biogas.

Vanessa Maldonado
Michigan State University, Ph.D.
EREF Scholar 2020
Destructive Technologies for the Degradation of Per- and Polyfluroalkyl
Substances (PFAS)

PFAS are a group of synthetic chemicals widely used in multiple consumer products (e.g. textiles, non-stick cookware) and industrial processes (e.g. fire-fighting foams, electronics) due to their unique properties and high chemical/thermal stability. Many of these products are disposed of in landfills, and PFAS has been detected in landfill leachates. Most landfill leachate is treated, which depending on the technology can generate a concentrate solution containing PFAS or saturated granular activated carbon (GAC). Currently, a number of destructive technologies are being evaluated as alternatives to sending the concentrate or saturated GAC back to a landfill, which might contribute to higher PFAS concentrations over time. Electrochemical Oxidation (EO) and Plasma Treatment (PT) are some of the destructive technologies that have the potential to degrade PFAS. In this research, Maldonado targets both technologies, EO and PT to destroy PFAS present in landfill leachates and saturated GAC containing PFAS, respectively.

Brooke Marten
University of Colorado, Boulder, Ph.D.
Tom J. Fatjo Scholar 2020
Organic Waste Management Systems – A Comparative Environmental Impact Assessment

There are a number of approaches to organics waste management. Marten’s research uses life cycle assessment (LCA) to compare the environmental impacts of various organic waste disposal options (i.e. conventional disposal in an engineered landfill with a landfill gas energy recovery system, anaerobic digestion, incineration and pyrolysis). One unique avenue that she is modeling is the pyrolysis (destruction of material under pressure at high temperatures, but that does not constitute burning of the waste) of organic waste to produce renewable energy and biochar, a material that can be used as an adsorbent to treat wastewaters, such as landfill leachate. The overall goal of her research is to quantify the environmental implications of each disposal route (e.g. conventional landfilling with energy generation, anaerobic digestion, incineration, pyrolysis) and encourage a shift to more sustainable organic waste management.

Marcos Miranda
Ohio State University, Ph.D.
EREF Scholar 2020
Changing the Narrative Around Industrial Solid Waste By-Products

When fossil fuel is burned to create energy, it releases an array of different gases, one of which is sulfur dioxide (SO2). Before being released into the atmosphere as flue gas, the SO2 must be removed using a process called flue gas desulfurization (FGD). Miranda’s project addresses several issues related to the FGD material that is produced, a material which is often landfilled, and acid mine drainage (AMD). AMD is a byproduct of mining activities where ore materials react to form sulfuric acid and dissolved iron, which can create pollution if not addressed. The research team has designed a treatment system that removes harmful pollutants from the AMD waters without the need for external inputs (i.e. energy or chemicals) and mixes the AMD with the FGD material. This incorporation of FGD material the causes the ore materials within the liquid to coalesce and form a precipitate that is concentrated with rare earth elements that can later be extracted. This material, after the extraction of valuable minerals, also has the potential to be used to backfill abandoned mines to prevent future generation of AMD.

Kelsey Rodriguez
University of Central Florida, MS
EREF Scholar 2020
Electrochemical-based Degradation Technology for the Treatment of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in Landfill Leachates

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are man-made chemicals linked to potentially adverse human health effects. However, due to PFAS’s strong chemical structure, they represent a class of environmentally persistent chemicals that make removal difficult with conventional treatment technologies (e.g. biological treatment), particularly in landfill leachate. This research seeks to use a newly created nanotechnology that utilizes electrochemistry for PFAS removal in landfill leachates. The electrochemistry provides the needed energy to break the strong chemical bonds inherent of in PFAS and overcome the traditional barriers of conventional advanced oxidation processes.

Angel Villarruel-Moore
University of Central Florida, MS
DCA Scholar 2020
MSW Incinerator Ash Co-Disposal with Unburned Waste: Implications for Elevated Temperatures

In recent years, there have been several landfills which have reported landfill gas temperatures in exceedance of their permitted limits set forth by the new source performance standards (NSPS) – these heightened gas temperatures are indicative of elevated temperatures in the waste itself. Previous research has shown a correlation between landfills with elevated temperatures and those which accept various combustion ashes as either daily cover or as waste itself. Villarruel-Moore’s research is focused on investigating various combustion ashes with the goal of identifying key compounds responsible for the observed exothermic activity that leads to elevated temperatures.

Anna Yip
University of California, Berkeley, MS
EREF Scholar 2020
UC Berkeley Plastics System Analysis

Single-use plastics have come under scrutiny with many cities and states initiating policies and goals to reduce or prohibit single-use plastics. The plastics narrative typically revolves around encouraging recycling; however, Yip’s work aims to flip this narrative, asking not how can we encourage recycling, but how can we reduce plastic waste altogether. Yip’s research project can be separated into two parts: (1) to offer a more in-depth, responsible and transparent look at UC-Berkeley’s plastic consumption and waste, and (2) to calculate the impacts of the newly proposed policy to “eliminate all non-essential single-use plastics for which there are viable alternatives by end of calendar year 2030”.

EREF scholarships recognize graduate students pursuing excellence in solid waste management research and education. Recipients are chosen based on credentials and potential contributions to the solid waste industry and its scientific community.

EREF scholarship applications for the 2021-2022 school year are due late Spring 2021. At the time of application, students must be, or will be in 2021, a full-time master’s or doctoral student, and have a clearly demonstrated interest in solid waste management research.

For more information on the EREF Scholarship Program or to access the application, please visit erefdn.org.

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

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Media Contact:

Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109
Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

Higher-res images are available upon request

EREF’s Socially-Distanced 2020 Fall Classic & Networking Event Brings Industry Together for Charity

Raleigh, NC (Aug. 25, 2020) – The Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) announced it will hold its 2020 Fall Classic & Networking Event in-person on September 30 – October 1 at the Pinehurst Resort in Pinehurst, NC. The event, one of the few in-person industry events this year, brings the industry back together with the support of GFL Environmental, the event’s overall sponsor, as well as over 20 additional sponsors thus far. All proceeds from the tournament will support EREF’s charitable mission to fund and direct scientific research and educational initiatives to establish sustainable waste management practices.

While EREF is working closely with Pinehurst staff to ensure the safety of guests, attendees can still expect the fun and quality networking opportunities that the Fall Classic has become synonymous with.

On Wednesday, September 30, the event will begin with an outside (weather permitting) putting contest and networking reception featuring hors d’oeuvres stations and open bars. Following a boxed grab-n’-go-style breakfast, the golf tournament tees off at 8:30 am on Course No. 3 and No. 5 on Thursday, October 1. The tournament will conclude with a contactless Awards Luncheon at 2:00 pm.

The format for the tournament will be four-person scramble with a shotgun start. Players on the first and second place teams will receive trophies and a framed team photo. Hole-in-one prizes will be given at all par threes, including the chance to win $50,000 cash. There will also be other prize winning opportunities, including the chance to win a $10,000 putting contest.

Get the Most Out of Your Time at Pinehurst!
Don’t miss playing the short, 9-hole course that the Golf Channel calls, “the most fun 10 acres in all of golf.” The Cradle Short Course is only $50 per person!

Special Golf Fees – available 3 days pre- and post-event (upon availability):

  • Course No. 1, No. 3, No. 5: $90 per person, per round (30% savings)
  • Course No. 2: $450 per person, per round (9% savings)
  • Course No. 4: $350 per person, per round (11% savings)
  • Course No. 6, No. 7, No. 8, No. 9: $240 per person, per round (15% savings)

Fall Classic registration, COVID-19 safety measures and other Pinehurst information is available at erefdn.org.

COVID-19 Safety Measures in Place
Below are measures EREF and Pinehurst are collaborating on for a safe experience:

  • Socially distanced activities (e.g. outside as much as possible) and increased spacing between seats and tables
  • Providing a mask to each attendee
  • Sanitizing carts and other equipment
  • Meals will be served by Pinehurst wait staff or packaged
  • No-contact awards ceremony
  • Temperature checks upon arrival

For the specific measures Pinehurst has implemented, click here for the “Pinehurst Promise”.

Schedule of Events

Wednesday, September 30

  • Welcome Reception and Putting Contest: 6:00 pm (Resort Club Veranda)

Thursday, October 1

  • Breakfast/Registration: 6:30 am (Donald Ross Room at the Clubhouse)
  • Shotgun Start: 8:30 am (Courses No. 3 and No. 5)
  • Lunch: 2:00 pm (Donald Ross Room at the Clubhouse)

This year’s Fall Classic sponsors – confirmed as of August 25, 2020 – include:

Overall Tournament Sponsor
GFL Environmental, Inc.
Major Giveaway Welcome Reception &
Bloody Mary Bars
Golf Ball & Tee Markers
Wastequip Big Truck Rental Caterpillar
Shirts Golf Carts Hats
Volvo Construction Equipment Environmental Solutions Group Covanta
Goody Bags &
Hole-in-One Insurance
Putting Contest Golf Towels
McNeilus Machinex Rush/Peterbilt
Beverage Carts Golf Contest Package Mulligans
Waste360

Agru
Risk Strategies

InagenAE/Blue Flame Crew LaBella
Longest Marshmallow
Drive Contest
Holes Super Silent Mobile Bidding
Civil & Environmental Consultants, Inc. Card Payment Services, PTR Baler, Rehrig Pacific Company, Waste Advantage Magazine, Waste Management, Weaver Michelin
Face Masks Staff Shirts
Meritor Sierra Container Group

 

Additional sponsorship opportunities are available. Please send an e-mail to cconklin@erefdn.org for more information.

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit erefdn.org.

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Media Contact:
Catherine Ardoin, Communications Manager
Phone: 919.861.6876 ext. 109
Email: cardoin@erefdn.org

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EREF to Host Virtual Annual Charitable Auction in 2020 Due to COVID-19

Raleigh, NC (June 4, 2020) – In response to the COVID-19 crisis, the Environmental Research & Education Foundation (EREF) will host its 2020 Annual Charitable Auction online in multiple phases.

EREF’s Auction, held each year at WasteExpo, accounts for a large portion of the Foundation’s annual revenue. Given WasteExpo’s virtual transition and ongoing uncertainties related to COVID-19, the EREF Board of Directors determined that the best way to minimize risk to the Foundation’s financial health would be to keep the event in the first half of 2020, which resulted in hosting the event virtually.

“The waste industry is an essential service during these difficult times; therefore, solid waste science remains essential. While we enjoy having the Auction at WasteExpo, I want to ensure that the Foundation is positioned to continue its mission, funding the research that still effects our everyday operations and lives,” said Pat Carroll, President of Environmental Solutions Group and EREF Board Chairman. “I encourage those who are able to contribute to the Auction, or EREF itself, to do so.”

When bidding opens June 15, Auction items will be available for bidding online through the Ritchie Bros. online bidding platform, IronPlanet.

EREF’s Silent Auction, which has been held online since 2016, will once again take place online, featuring must-haves and rare finds such as iPads and autographed images. Stay tuned for more bidding information.

New this year – in an effort to provide additional relationship-building opportunities, EREF has added a new element called the Super Silent Auction. This will consist of outings with key industry executives (e.g. procurement managers). The Super Silent Auction will take place during EREF’s Fall Classic & Networking Event from September 30th – October 1st in Pinehurst, NC.

“This was a difficult decision for the Foundation to make. Each year, we enjoy bringing together various facets of the waste industry into our WasteExpo booth to network and support solid waste science,” said Bryan Staley, EREF CEO and President. “However, EREF fully understands that safety and health are of the utmost importance in these unprecedented times. Hosting the elements of the charitable auction online will provide donors and bidders the opportunity to still support EREF. We hope to be back together again at WasteExpo in 2021.”

EREF will release more information as it becomes available. In the meantime, please contact events@erefdn.org with any questions.

EREF is a 501(c)3 class charity that funds and directs scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. For more complete information on EREF funded research, its scholarship program and how to donate to this great cause, visit https://erefdn.org.

Click here to view a PDF of this release.