Special Training - Waste Diversion & Recycling

Over 70 recycling, sustainable materials management and compost professionals gathered at the New Mexico Recycling Coalition's 2022 recycling training and annual meeting at the Albuquerque Museum earlier this month.  Attendees shared ideas, learned new skills and earned 8 continuing education units from the NM Environment Department: Solid Waste Bureau.

Presentations to Review

9:00—11:00 Source Reduction Panel: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Rot

The morning panel discussion focused on local case studies that highlight some of the “Rs” that precede recycling in the waste diversion hierarchy: Refuse, Reduce, Reuse and Rot!

Laura Rufin from Southwest Cheese provided details related to how her organization changed their procurement operations to refuse waste before it enters their large manufacturing facility near Clovis.  See Presentation Here.

Amy Harmon from Soap & Supply refill and beauty bar in Santa Fe explainned her company’s impact to reduce single-use plastics by offering customers refill options.  See Presentation Here

Shelby Kaye, artist and founder of Broken Arrow Glass presented creative upcycling alternatives that reuse glass bottles from local businesses as part of their closed-loop upcycling system.  See Presentation Here.

Charlene Carr from NMSU’s College of Agricultural, Consumer & Environmental Sciences discussed organics diversion and the composting process as we learned the importance of “rot” in our source reduction explorations.  See Presentation Here.

11:00—12:00 Money Talk

The Recycling and Illegal Dumping (RAID) and the New Mexico Clean & Beautiful (NMCB) grants are both tied to the same funding mechanism and have provided over $1 million per year for tire recycling, recycling, illegal dumping abatement, beautification and waste diversion efforts in NM since 2006.

NM Environment Department: Solid Waste Bureau’s Climate Specialist, Genevieve Morgan, explained the details of the RAID funding opportunity, how it works and exemplary projects completed via RAID. See presentation here.

Lucy Stanus, the Clean & Beautiful Program Coordinator with the NM Tourism Department highlighted projects completed throughout the state that align closely with her organizations goals.

12:00—2:00 Lunchtime Discussion with Chancey Foster of We.Grow.Eco.  See presentation here

2:00—3:00 Employee Recruitment & Retention in 2022

Finding qualified and willing workers is a struggle throughout all industries currently, including the waste management industry. Rafael Leos, the Deputy Director of South Central Solid Waste Authority out of Las Cruces helped attendees understand how the pandemic has redefined the workspace, and employee/employer relations. This work force wake up call is an opportunity to build programs from the ground up.  That is if, we can find and keep the staff to do the work.  In this session attendees learned about the millennial and Gen Z mindset and how to embrace a new approach to regain staff stability.  See presentation here


Thank you to our Presenting Sponsors!