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Release Date: 10/22/1997
Contact Information: Leo Kay, Press Office, (617)918-4154

BOSTON - EPA-New England Administrator John P. DeVillars and Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs Secretary Trudy Coxe joined leading business and municipal recyclers from throughout the region today to recognize their continued waste reduction efforts as part of the EPA's WasteWi$e Program.

The EPA launched WasteWi$e in 1994 as a voluntary partnership program designed to help businesses find practical methods for reducing municipal solid waste. More than 630 organizations are currently members of the program, 54 of which are headquartered in New England.

In 1996, reporting New England partners prevented more than 1.6 million pounds of waste, saving over $155,000 in disposal and purchasing costs. They also collected more than 36 million pounds of recyclables and purchased over 7 billion pounds of recycled content products, worth more than $20 million.

"The organizations we are recognizing today serve as proof positive that Yankee ingenuity is alive and kicking in New England's environmental and business community -- the result: a better environment and savings to business," DeVillars said.

"The WasteWi$e program is an excellent fit for Massachusetts," Coxe said. "In Massachusetts, many businesses and local government agencies are recycling more and wasting less. However, the state also needs to set a good example by improving our recycling and waste reduction programs, and by continuing to increase our purchases of recycled products."

Partners are located nationwide and span 35 different industry sectors, from aerospace to utilities. In May, the program expanded to include state and local governments and tribal nations as partners. To date, more than 80 governments have signed up as charter partners, including the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

When they join the program, WasteWi$e partners commit to implementing waste reduction activities in three areas: waste prevention, recyclables collection, and purchase or manufacture of recycled products. In 1996, New England WasteWi$e partners reduced waste by more than 1.5 million pounds.

Some examples of what our New England partners are doing to reduce waste include the following:

    • Aetna, Inc. noted their support for the wise use of materials when they entered into an agreement with suppliers to purchase napkins and towels manufactured with paper waste generated at Aetna facilities.
    • The United States Surgical Corporation developed a hands-on waste reduction class for a local elementary school.
    • Cape Cod Hospital purchased reusable plastic trays, eliminating 2,000 pounds of waste and saving $3,200. The hospital also recycled 23 tons of paper to save $4,700 in waste hauling costs.
    • Ben & Jerry's reduced approximately 234 tons of corrugated waste by selling 35 percent of its boxes for reuse. In addition, the company reduced the amount of dairy by-product generated by 31 percent per gallon of ice cream.
    • HASBRO, Inc. saved approximately $410,000 and prevented 767,000 pounds of waste in one year by reducing the thickness and material used in corrugated shipping containers by 15 percent, and in polypropylene parts bags by 12.5 percent.
For futher information on the EPA New England WasteWi$e Forum, or on the WasteWi$e program, contact the helpline at 800-EPA-WISE (800 372-9473).

The following WasteWi$e partners are based in New England:

Aetna, Inc.
Bath Iron Works Corp.
Ben & Jerry's
Boston Edison Company
Cape Cod Hospital
City of Burlington, Vermont
City of Dover, New Hampshire
Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center
Data General Corp.
EG&G, Inc.
Eastern Research Group
Environmental Engineering Consultants
Fleet Financial Group
GZA GeoEnvironmental, Inc.
General Dynamics Defense Systems, Inc.
Grolier, Inc.
Hill-Rom Company
Hyde Manufacturing Company Inc.
Industrial Economics
Kaman Aerospace Corp.
La Cazuela Restaurant
M. A. Hanna Resin Distribution Company
Malden Mills Industries, Inc.
Massachusetts Mutual - the Blue Chip Company
Millipore Corp.
Northeast Utilities Service Company
Northeastern University
Peoples Bank
Perkin-Elmer Corp.
Perry Restaurant Group
Pitney Bowes, Inc.
Polaroid Corp.
Recycled Office Products Company
Shaw's Supermarkets, Inc.
Sodexho USA
State Street Bank & Trust Company
Stonyfield Farm Yogurt
Suffolk University
The Aerovox Group
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
The Gillette Company
The New England
The Town of Mansfield, Connecticut
U.S. Postal Service - Northeast Area
UNUM Life Insurance Company of America
United States Surgical Corp.
United Technologies Corp.
University of Rhode Island
Veryfine Products
Witco Corp.