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 WASHINGTON, April 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Citing the need for a clear national policy on industrial resource recovery, a coalition of firms from the metals industry joined this week to urge Congress to "recognize the tremendous environmental and economic benefits" of recovering natural resources from industrial by-products and to adopt policies that promote reclamation of these resource-rich materials.
 The Metals Recovery Coalition (MRC) formally was launched in Washington at a meeting attended by 16 companies involved in the metals industry, including manufacturers, reclaimers and users of steel and non-ferrous metals. MRC is seeking specific language in the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) that will foster resource recovery.
 "RCRA reauthorization provides an ideal opportunity to develop a fair and intelligent national policy for industrial reclamation operations, something this nation desperately needs," said Jim Cornell, a spokesman for the MRC and vice president/general counsel of EnviroSource Inc., a member of the MRC. "But to accomplish this goal, Congress must understand that resource recovery is clearly advantageous to the environment and a preferable alternative to the treatment and disposal of industrial by-products as waste."
 The MRC is supporting amendments to RCRA reauthorization that will help formulate a realistic national policy on metals recovery that:
 -- Encourages resource recovery as a preferred alternative to
 waste treatment and disposal in scarce landfill capacity.
 -- Ensures protection of both the environment and human health.
 -- Preserves valuable natural resources and saves energy.
 The MRC also is seeking a dialogue with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to correct the so-called "derived-from" rule so that it no longer is an impediment to resource recovery. The "derived-from" rule presumes that by-products from the processing of hazardous wastes remain forever hazardous without regard for the nature of the material or the potential uses for the recovered products.
 One principal goal of the MRC is to redefine metal-bearing materials and similar by-products destined for reclamation as "reclaimable material" and not "solid waste." These materials are rich in metals that must otherwise be obtained from virgin ore. Moreover, MRC contends that metals recovery is an industrial process and is not waste treatment, and the "derived-from" rule should not apply to intermediate or end product materials generated in the metals recovery process.
 "As a national policy, RCRA was initially conceived to promote recycling and recovery of precious natural resources and limit the need to dispose of waste products in crowded landfills," said Jim Donohoe, associate general counsel and secretary of Republic Engineered Steels Inc., a member of MRC. "Following RCRA's direction, the metals industry has made its top priority the development of safe and effective technologies to recover valuable natural resources from industrial by-products, to be reused in new products.
 "Unfortunately, our national policy still lags behind the industrial technology, and the cost to the nation could be substantial if we continue needlessly to dispose of resource-rich materials into landfills," Donohue said. "We believe RCRA reauthorization should correct this situation, and we intend to work toward that end during the upcoming legislative debate."
 In one of its first actions, the MRC submitted to Congress a rebuttal to statements made about the metals recovery industry in testimony by the Hazardous Waste Treatment Council (HWTC), a consortium of waste treatment businesses, which raised misleading concerns about the safety of metals recovery during a March 16 hearing before the House Energy and Commerce committee.
 "As long as these resource-rich materials are treated as 'waste,' national policy will continue to favor disposal over recovery," Donohoe said.
 "The members of the MRC have a significant stake in preserving the environment and our precious natural resources, and we intend to make certain Congress has the opportunity to consider all the facts underlying this highly complex issue," Cornell added.
 Metals Recovery Coalition members include:
 American Tinning and Galvanizing
 Celtic Metal Inc.
 EnviroSource Inc.
 FirstMiss Steel Inc.
 Gulf Chemical and Metallurgical Corp.
 Horsehead Resource Development Co.
 Koppel Steel Corp.
 Nucor Corp.
 MacSteel Co.
 Republic Engineered Steels Inc.
 Rogers Galvanizing Co.
 Trinity Industries Inc.
 World Resources Co.
 Young Galvanizing
 Zinc Corporation of America
 Mission Statement and Statement of Principles
 Metals Recovery Coalition (MRC)
 What is the Metals Recovery Coalition?
 MRC is a broad-based industrial coalition dedicated to advancing the recovery of metals for reuse in new products through reclamation technologies. The MRC will promote the interests of manufacturers, reclaimers, scrap dealers, transportation companies and industrial users of steel and non-ferrous metals such as copper, lead, zinc, nickel, chromium and aluminum. The MRC was founded by concerned members of the metals industry seeking to achieve a national regulatory and legislative policy that promotes reclamation and metals recovery.
 MRC Mission
 To help formulate an effective national policy on the regulation of metals recovery that:
 -- Encourages resource recovery as a preferred alternative to
 waste treatment and disposal.
 -- Ensures protection of both the environment and human health.
 -- Works to preserve valuable natural resources.
 To help ensure such a national policy on metals recovery, MRC will:
 -- Participate in the congressional debate on the Resource
 Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and seek specific
 language that will foster metals recovery.
 -- Work with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to correct
 the "derived-from" rule so that it is no longer an impediment
 to resource recovery through metals reclamation.
 MRC Policy Principles
 The MRC is seeking recognition and endorsement of the following general principles:
 1. Recovery of metals for reuse as raw materials is a preferred alternative to the treatment and disposal of metal-bearing materials as "wastes." Metals reclamation protects the environment by reducing the threat of pollution that results from land disposal, and preserves finite natural resources, such as virgin ores, as well as valuable landfill space. Metals recovery is consistent with the RCRA national policy objectives to promote resource recovery and minimize and prevent pollution.
 2. Metals recovery is an industrial manufacturing process and not waste treatment. Metals recovery processes should, therefore, be regulated in the same manner as other industrial processes, i.e. fully subject to the same environmental protection requirements as other manufacturing processes including Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act emission and discharge limitations and RCRA solid and hazardous waste requirements for discarded residues.
 3. Reclaimable materials that are processed for resource recovery should not be classified as "solid wastes." Reclaimable metal-bearing materials used in reclamation processes are not wastes unless they are intended for disposal.
 4. Regulation of the handling and storage of metal-bearing hazardous reclaimable materials (prior to their initial introduction to the reclamation process) should seek to promote dual goals:
 -- Encourage resource recovery.
 -- Ensure adequate protection of human health and the
 5. Materials currently exempt from RCRA requirements should continue to be exempt (e.g. steel scrap).
 6. The "derived-from" rule should not apply to materials generated in metals recovery. Beneficial use of non-hazardous end products of the metals reclamation process should be encouraged. Other materials generated from metals recovery and destined for disposal should be considered "hazardous wastes" only if they are "characteristic" or if they have been listed as hazardous wastes under RCRA Section 3001.
 -0- 4/28/92
 /CONTACT: Phil Armstrong of the Metals Recovery Coalition, 202-737-3004/ CO: Metals Recovery Coalition ST: District of Columbia IN: MNG SU: LEG

DC -- DC012 -- 3806 04/28/92 12:34 EDT
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Date:Apr 28, 1992

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