AKRON, OHIO - A Coca-Cola Co. official will join a panel of plastics industry representatives and recycling advocates at Plastics Encounter Atlanta to discuss the economics and challenges of PET container recycling.
Despite increasing PET waste collection, recently released data show the U.S. recycling rate slipped to 22.3 percent in 2000, termed an 11-year low by the Arlington, Va.-based Container Recycling Institute.
The Nov. 13 panel, to be moderated by Plastics News reporter Steve Toloken, will feature:
* Ben R. Jordan, environmental manager for Atlanta-based beverage giant Coca-Cola North America.
* Pierre Ferrari, chair of the Atlanta-based Businesses & Environmentalists Allied for Recycling, a project of Global Green USA, the American arm of former Soviet Premier Mikhail Gorbachev's Green Cross International environmental group.
* Frank Mechura, chief executive officer of Philadelphia-based blow molder Constar, as well as executive vice president of Constar parent Crown Cork & Seal Co. Inc., and vice chairman of the National Association for PET Container Resources in Charlotte, N.C.
* Peter Anderson, president of RecycleWorlds Consulting Corp. in Madison, Wis.
Jordan has been point man for the beverage giant's stated plans to work to boost PET recycling rates. He joined the firm in 1996 and previously was its corporate environmental affairs manager.
Ferrari, a former senior vice president and marketing director for Coca-Cola's U.S. subsidiary, combines a rare set of credentials with parties on both sides of the environmental debate. He now heads BEAR, an unusual alliance of businesses, recyclers, environmentalists and other stakeholders that wants to double U.S. beverage-container recycling rates to 80 percent. The group is spearheading a multiparty task force to document true cost of recycling and to suggest viable courses of action.
Meanwhile, Frank Mechura heads Constar, estimated by Plastics News to be North America's third-largest blow molder, with $660 million in blow molding-related sales last year.
NAPCOR, of which Mechura is incoming chairman, provides technical assistance and some funding to communities, and conducts programs to recycle more single-serve PET containers. But the group opposes bottle bills as a consumer tax.
RecycleWorlds advises businesses and government on how to establish and improve economically sustainable recycling systems.
Plastics Encounter Atlanta, a trade show and conference organized by Plastics News, takes place Nov. 13-15 at the Georgia International Convention Center.