February 2021 Highlights

The first day of Spring is just weeks away and it is time to get ready for the promise of a new season. Take some time this month to improve customer or resident education about the Bye Bye Mattress program (see our stories about new offerings) or to verify your company information is accurate for annual reports. We’ve also released a brand new video to help collection sites operate efficiently and we’re “charged up” about our recent research activities.

Mattress Industry

Improve Customer Education with Bye Bye Mattress Digital Badge

As consumers research their next mattress purchase, they are likely visiting your website. Consumers are also becoming more comfortable with buying mattresses online and online shoppers do not like surprises in the purchase process.

Use our Bye Bye Mattress badge to introduce your customers to the program and the purpose of the recycling fee before they start their check out. Simply link the badge to ByeByeMattress.com.

Email info@byebyemattress.com to request yours today.

Is Your Company Info Correct in Annual Reports?

Each year, MRC is required to publish company information about the registered retailers, producers or renovators in annual reports submitted to state regulatory agencies in California, Connecticut and Rhode Island. Each state report varies, but could include company names, addresses, product brand names or URNs.

For California’s report, we will be publishing the information that is on file for your company as of March 31, 2021. Please review your profile on MRCreporting.org for accuracy and make any necessary changes before this deadline.

For assistance, email support@mattressrecyclingcouncil.org.

We’ve Got Your Back on Take Back: Resources for Understanding California’s AB 187

On January 1, an important change to California’s Used Mattress Recovery and Recycling Act took effect. Now, all retailers that deliver a new mattress to a consumer in California (including online sales) must offer to pick up a used mattress at no additional cost to the consumer. This may leave you with a lot of questions, so check out our webinar and FAQs regarding the amendments to California’s law which are known as AB 187.

For more information, contact MRC at info@mattressrecyclingcouncil.org or 1-855-229-1691.

Collection Network

Be Ready for Earth Day: Request the We Recycle Badge

As you freshen up your recycling information in preparation for Earth Day, use our badge to signal that your site participates in the Bye Bye Mattress program. It is great for use online, in social media, for digital communications or even in printed materials like recycling guides or utility bill inserts.

Email info@byebyemattress.com to request yours today.

New Cycle of California Collection Site Improvement Funding Opens March 1

Our California collection site improvement funding program awards up to $10,000 per collection site for equipment and infrastructure improvements that will better protect discarded mattresses and box springs to increase their recyclability or achieve other efficiencies such as lowering costs and improving safety. Previous funding cycles supported the construction of weather coverings and cement pads to protect mattress integrity, mobile loading ramps to help with transportation and storage, and additional storage space to house and protect mattresses.

Eligible entities include new or existing California mattress collection sites that are open to the public. Applicants can be private companies, nonprofits or government entities.

Check our research page on Monday, March 1, for Cycle 4 funding details and the application package.

California Recyclers, Solid Waste Facilities and Renovators Must Report to CalRecycle

All California mattress recyclers, solid waste facilities and mattress renovators are required to annually report information regarding the renovation, recycling, and/or disposal of used mattresses and foundations/box springs.
Annual reports for calendar year 2020 must be submitted to the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) by May 1, 2021.
Visit CalRecycle’s Mattress Annual Reporting page for more information on the annual reporting requirements and for resources to assist in meeting the annual reporting obligations.
Businesses that do not provide the statutorily-required annual report by the deadline will incur a penalty.
Please contact mattresses@calrecycle.ca.gov with any questions.


Follow Up Study Begins on Project to Manufacture Battery Electrodes Made From Recycled Mattress Materials 

In February 2020, MRC awarded a research contract to Pittsburg State University’s Kansas Polymer Research Center to explore whether recycled mattress materials could be chemically modified to produce battery and supercapacitor components. Under the direction of Professor Ram Gupta, the Research Center completed a phase 1 study which successfully produced and evaluated a variety of recycled mattress materials including polyurethane foam, polyester, cotton and coconut fiber.

The results were very encouraging. Preliminary data indicated that several materials had significant performance advantages over common electrode materials such as carbon, graphene and carbon nanotubes. Subsequently, MRC decided to sponsor a follow up research project construct and test actual batteries using the developed components and evaluate their performance. The follow up study began this month and will conclude in February 2022.

Waste Characterization Study Contractor Selected

MRC selected MSW Consultants, LLC to perform a waste characterization study of non-recyclable material left over from the mattress recycling process. “To achieve a higher program recycling rate, it’s important for MRC to understand which post-consumer mattress materials are going to landfill and why.” said Mike O’Donnell, MRC’s managing director. “MRC can use this information to prioritize research projects that focus on these unrecyclable components.”

MSW Consultants will conduct the waste characterization study at two different recycling facilities this spring. When completed, MRC will post a study report on the research page of our website. This study is part of MRC’s annual $1 million California research fund to improve the recyclability of discarded mattresses and box springs and build new markets for recycled mattress materials.

Learn more about all of our current projects here.

MRC to Begin Life Cycle Assessment

MRC entered into an agreement with Scope 3 Consulting to perform a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of our California recycling operations. This project will take approximately 18 months to complete and will systematically determine the environmental impacts of our program from point of collection to recycling end markets or landfill. While environmental impacts are typically measured in terms of environmental indicators such as CO2 emissions, energy use and landfill avoidance, our objective is to determine the baseline performance of current operations against these and other environmental performance metrics. We hope the information will inform policy development, guide future decisions and evaluate the relative impacts of our current program.

Learn more about all of our current projects here.

New Collection Sites

Town of Newington Joins Collection Network

We would like to welcome Newington, Connecticut, to our mattress recycling program. They will be accepting mattresses from town residents at their landfill and recycling center.

2045 Main St.
Newington, CT 06111

Visit their listing on the Bye Bye Mattress website for more information.

Upcoming Events

Connecticut Recyclers Coalition Conference

February 25
Website: www.ctrecyclers.com

DEEP Commissioner Katie Dykes headlines the event which will focus on the 2021 session of the Connecticut General Assembly and the materials management challenges facing the state of Connecticut.

Southern California Waste Management Forum Spring Conference

March 24
Website: www.scwmf.org

MRC is proud to be among the sponsors that make SCWMF’s virtual conference possible. We look forward to hearing from Rachel Machi Wagoner, the newly appointed director of CalRecycle, and engaging with the leaders and decision makers in attendance.

Northeast Recyclers Council Conference 

March 30-31
Website: www.nerc.org

NERC’s 2021 virtual spring conference will focus on the most timely topics in the source reduction, reuse, recycling, composting and green purchasing industry sectors. As part of the U.S. Extended Producer Responsibility Program Update panel, MRC’s Marie Clarke will present on the success of our Northeast programs and the benefits of a regional approach to mattress recycling. The session will be held on Wednesday, March 31, at 4:00 p.m. ET


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