- Eco Entreprises Quebec (EEQ), a nonprofit launched by companies that market containers, packaging, and printed material, will invest $4 million to promote demonstration projects and equip several sorting centers with glass processing and cleaning equipment. The organization, which collects company contributions to finance municipal curbside recycling in Quebec, will collaborate with partners in that region and from abroad for this glass project — dubbed the Innovative Glass Works Plan.
- The nonprofit’s five-year plan begins with a focus on updating glass sorting equipment, to be tested in sorting centers over the next few months, according to EEQ, according to a press release. A request for proposals from Quebec's 24 sorting centers will be issued in January 2016.
- Among other near-future endeavors are to support market outlets that use glass collected via curbside recycling. The long-term goal is to achieve 100% recycling of all glass collected in Quebec.
This ambitious plan marks a new confidence in the potential to recycle and make money from glass, a material that has posed tremendous challenges for recyclers who don't have the expensive technology to separate it and prevent contamination of other materials entering single-stream systems.
In the U.S., only a few companies are capitalizing on glass recycling, and it has been an expensive endeavor.
EEQ believes it can develop sound, economically feasible business models. According to Maryse Vermette, EEQ president and CEO, "Tangible and realistic solutions for processing all types of glass in Quebec are at hand, and we are convinced that our step-by-step approach will ensure they are implemented."
Denis Brisebois, chairman of EEQ's board of directors, says, "The modernization of sorting centers will confirm Quebec's leadership in the area of glass recycling collected via curbside recycling and will generate significant positive impacts in North America, thanks to a major international partnership … The expertise Quebec develops could be exported all over the continent."