Sustainable Operations Series: Beyond the Bin: The Untold Story – What happens to the Materials You Collect for Recycling after they leave your Facility?

Recorded On: 11/04/2015

Session Description

Practice Greenhealth members work very diligently to maximize recycling rates at their facilities. Award-winning facilities have a median recycling rate of 31% - fantastic! This call will take a closer look at that 31% -- Is that 31% “recycled" material truly recycled? What are the challenges faced with materials after they leave the facility? How are materials prepared for market and where do they go? What types of materials challenge recyclers? Is there a way for hospital teams to truly know which of their materials are successfully marketed?

Join us for expert input on what happens with materials after they leave the facility – Learn about material recovery facilities, the reality of marketing materials, what materials are successfully recycled and which are more challenging. Learn how this knowledge can inform conversation with purchasing and a push towards increasing recyclability of plastics.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand what happens to recyclables after they leave your facility.
  • Understand the quality vs. quantity debate.
  • Learn tips to maximize contracting discussion with potential vendors.
  • Understand which materials are valuable and which are harder to market.
  • Change purchasing decisions to maximize recycling value.
  • Understand which materials are most economically viable for recycling, but why you still might want to recycle more.
  • Learn about sustainable material management and how upstream issues effect downstream recycling opportunities.
  • Identify key resources to better understand recycling markets and value or lack thereof, of materials you collect for recycling.


Julie L. Rhodes, Independent Consultant,

Julie L. Rhodes is an independent consultant specializing in solid waste, reuse,
recycling and environmental stewardship with business, municipal and non-profit
clients. Julie has worked in solid waste issues for more than 25 years, and created
Julie L Rhodes Consulting 15 years ago where she undertakes projects in water
quality, air quality and land management, as well as works with a broad spectrum
of clients on research, project development, public education and fundraising.
Rhodes recently spent 18 months launching the City of Austin's Recycling
Economic Development program during a brief time away from consulting.

Prior to becoming self-employed, Rhodes led the Indiana Department of Commerce's Recycling Market Development Program, and served as Executive Director for the Association of Indiana Solid Waste Management Districts, the Reuse Development Organization and the National Furniture Bank Association; and as chair of the MidAmerica of Recycling Officials and the Indiana Governor's Appointee to the Council of Great Lakes Governors Recycle Board.

She has been active with State Recycling Organizations for 25 years, in Indiana and Texas, and now serves on the National Recycling Coalition (NRC) Board where she is Treasurer and Co-Chair of NRC's National Sustainable Materials Management Summit, and now developing the National SMM Action Plan.

Visit to learn more about Julie's work.


Member:$ 0 Non-member: $79


Beyond the Bin: The Untold Story – What happens to the Materials You Collect for Recycling after they leave your Facility?
60-minute Presentation Live event: 11/04/2015 at 1:00 PM (EST) You must register to access.