Covanta Energy Corporation, a leading global owner and operator of energy-from-waste projects, recently announced that John G. Waffenschmidt, vice president of environmental science and community affairs, has been appointed to the Product Stewardship Institute (PSI) Advisory Council.
The PSI Advisory Council is charged with advising PSI on reducing the health and environmental impacts throughout the lifecycle of a consumer product. This includes ensuring products are responsibly manufactured and used, as well as managing their post-use impact on local communities.
As a member of the Advisory Council, Waffenschmidt will assist in gaining public visibility for PSI’s stewardship movement.
“John will bring a thoughtful and balanced analytic approach to Advisory Council initiatives tempered with an in-depth understanding of lifecycle analysis,” says Scott Cassel, CEO and founder of the Product Stewardship Institute. “His ability to engage with a full range of stakeholders will also be an invaluable addition to the group.”
As the vice president of environmental science and community affairs at Covanta Energy, Waffenschmidt is responsible for building community outreach strategies, reducing waste stream toxicity under Covanta’s Clean World Initiative, developing environmental justice policies, and working with various academic and NGO organizations. He also serves as a member of the Pennsylvania Environmental Justice Advisory Board and the Regional Plan Association, Long Island chapter.
“Covanta provides sustainable solutions to the communities we serve, and I’m honoured to have the opportunity to help share our expertise in these areas as a member of the PSI Advisory Council,” says Waffenschmidt. “By spreading the product stewardship mindset and helping manufacturers adopt a more sustainable product lifecycle, we aim to control the toxicity and amount of disposed waste, which will ultimately benefit the environment and our local communities.”
Covanta’s Clean World Initiative (CWI) works to remove potentially harmful materials from the waste stream and recycle or dispose of them properly.
Programs under CWI include collections for rechargeable batteries, mercury collection programs for unwanted mercury-containing devices such as thermostats and thermometers, and Rx4Safety, the Covanta program that provides the safe disposal of unwanted pharmaceuticals and medications collected by household drug take-back programs free of charge.
To date, this nationwide program has destroyed more than 240,000 pounds of unwanted medications, helping to keep waterways and drinking water safe, and removing these drugs from potential abuse.
Covanta’s energy-from-waste facilities provide a safe, sustainable waste disposal method that reduces greenhouse gases and produces clean, renewable energy from municipal solid waste.
The company continues to work to address the needs of communities by maintaining healthy relationships and constructive interaction with community leaders, clients and others interested in facility operations.