- Waste diversion software company Re-TRAC Connect has announced a collaboration with The Recycling Partnership for the beta launch of the Municipal Measurement Program (MMP).
- The MMP is designed to standardize terminology and methodology to create more consistent measurement metrics in U.S. and Canadian curbside recycling programs.
- Participation is free and 100 municipalities will be accepted for the beta program, Re-TRAC Connect announced. The official MMP launch is expected in early 2019.
This new initiative is modeled on the existing State Measurement Program, which originated out of EPA Region 4 about 10 years ago, and was the focus of this year's first-ever Measurement Matters Summit in Tennessee. As previewed at that event, the MMP is seen as a way to help bring more resources to the local level in terms of reporting tools and information sharing between jurisdictions via the Recycle Search portal.
Just as a lack of consistency among municipal curbside collection programs creates a lot of confusion for consumers, the industry also suffers from a lack of standardization in measuring data and tracking the success of individual government programs. By enabling municipalities to track overall tonnage, pounds per household, diversion rates, broader economic benefits and other metrics, the hope is that these programs can find new opportunities to improve.
Sorting out the broader standardization question is seen as an ongoing process, and likely a slow one due to existing state and local regulations, but these types of voluntary initiatives are gaining traction in key industry circles. As local governments look for new ways to improve participation to meet diversion goals, while also reducing contamination to respond to market conditions, having more data is seen as a key to help them make informed investment decisions.