Solid Waste & Recycling


SWANA joins new plastics pact

Silver Spring, Maryland – The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) is participating in the U.S. Plastics Pact, an agreement to work collectively towards a common vision of a circular economy for plastics.

The U.S. Plastics Pact brings together businesses, government entities, NGOs, researchers, and other stakeholders as part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s network of Plastics Pacts around the world. The purpose is to collectively meet impactful goals by 2025 that stakeholders could not otherwise meet on their own.

“It is SWANA’s mission to support the advancement of the industry from solid waste management to resource management,” said David Biderman, SWANA’s executive director and CEO.

“The U.S. Plastics Pact is an important step in that direction. The ambitious targets set by the Pact, together with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s impending national recycling strategy and national recycling goals, will substantially improve recycling in the United States.”

“Together, through the U.S. Plastics Pact, we will ignite systems change to accelerate progress toward a circular economy,” says Sarah Dearman, VP of circular ventures for The Recycling Partnership.

“As the lead organization that engages the full supply chain to advance circularity in the U.S., it’s a natural fit for The Recycling Partnership to further collaborative action with other industry leaders to create substantial, long-lasting change for the betterment of our planet. The results from the U.S. Plastics Pact’s efforts to advance packaging, improve recycling, and reduce plastic waste will benefit the entire system and all materials.”

SWANA, as one of 60 Founding Activators of the Pact, will work with other recycling stakeholders to achieve the following four objectives:

  1. Define a list of packaging to be designated as problematic or unnecessary by 2021 and take measures to eliminate them by 2025.
  2. By 2025, all plastic packaging is 100% reusable, recyclable, or compostable.
  3. By 2025, undertake ambitious actions to effectively recycle or compost 50% of plastic packaging.
  4. By 2025, the average recycled content or responsibly sourced bio-based content in plastic packaging will be 30%.

The next step for the U.S. Plastics Pact will be to create a roadmap, laying out the steps to achieving the targets outlined above.

The U.S. Plastics Pact will seek guidance from an Advisory Council, made up of 10 Activator organizations, companies, and governments. They are: Amcor; Balcones Resources Inc.; Austin Resource Recovery (City of Austin, TX); Eureka Recycling; Grove Collaborative,;Mars, Incorporated; Target; The Coca-Cola Company; Unilever United States; and, Walmart, Inc.

For more information on how to join the U.S. Plastics Pact and drive collective action, visit the website