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Last week, the House Committee on Energy & Commerce held a hearing on “No Time to Waste: Solutions for America’s Broken Recycling System”. In conjunction with the hearing, the American Cleaning Institute (ACI) offered its perspective as Congress examines ways to improve America’s recycling capabilities.

“ACI recognizes the need to mitigate the impacts associated with the creation, use, and disposal of our product packaging,” wrote Nathan Sell, ACI senior director, Sustainability in a letter to Chairman Tonko and Ranking Member McKinley. “Cleaning product packaging is designed to protect the health and safety of consumers and their families, while also ensuring safe transport, storage and use of cleaning products during all stages of a product's lifecycle.”

“The optimization of ACI member company product packaging is a priority to deliver the performance of the products ACI members produce. It is for this reason that we have established guiding principles that help us ensure our products, which provide hygiene and cleanliness, do so in a manner that is environmentally sound, socially responsible and economically viable without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs,” wrote Sell.

“Our members have collaborated on guidelines to help direct design and manufacturing, and to aid in the development and use of recyclable packaging. We have also charted a roadmap aiming to achieve 100 percent collection and reuse, recycling or composting of cleaning product packaging waste by 2040.”

ACI emphasized the importance of minimizing post-consumer waste for future generations and the health of our planet. ACI encourages policymakers to take the following steps to improve our recycling systems and encourage the adoption of more sustainable practices:

• Increasing availability of post-consumer recycled plastics

• Reducing single-use plastics

• Data collection

• Consumer education

Read the full letter here.

In May, the ACI released a toolkit focused on facility safety. Read more on that here.