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U.S. TEXTILE MILLS RECYCLE ALMOST HALF OF WASTE

 WASHINGTON, Aug. 17 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. textile companies recycled 43 percent of their waste in 1992, according to an industry waste generation survey, the American Textile Manufacturers Institute (ATMI) announced today.
 ATMI conducted a survey of 348 textile facilities in 1992 and a similar, but less detailed, survey of 290 facilities in 1989. ATMI's Solid Waste Subcommittee, chaired by Ted LeJeune of Burlington Industries, Inc., conducted the surveys.
 Of the solid waste generated by the textile companies in 1992, 43 percent was recycled and 39 percent was sent to landfills, with the remainder of the waste being disposed of by other methods, such as incineration. In the 1989 survey, 23 percent was recycled and 70 percent sent to landfills.
 In 1992, mills recycled 96 percent of metals, 92 percent of fiber waste, 88 percent of carding waste, 85 percent of assorted rags, 73 percent of fabric waste and 64 percent of wood pallets.
 "U.S. textile mills have made great strides in the area of solid waste disposal over the last few years, with our recycling rate almost doubling since 1989," said ATMI President Henry A. Truslow III. "We still have room for improvement and are working with our suppliers, customers and each other to develop more efficient ways to dispose of waste -- even transforming it into valuable raw materials for other manufacturing industries."
 Truslow credited the dramatic increase in the industry's recycling efforts to public awareness of environmental concerns, improved markets for waste products and ATMI's Encouraging Environmental Excellence (E3) program, launched last year. Textile companies that follow certain environmental guidelines can qualify for participation in the E3 program, which allows them to use a certified logo and identifies them as leaders in environmental preservation in the industry.
 One formal effort to reduce waste was instituted by ATMI's Solid Waste Subcommittee, in cooperation with the Ecological and Toxicological Association of the Dyestuffs Manufacturing Industry (ETAD). ATMI member companies agreed to build bulk storage tanks at their facilities for large volume dyes and finishes.
 Major dyestuffs manufacturers contracted with dye drum reconditioners to collect, prepare and return empty drums from textile facilities to dye manufacturers for reuse. In return, textile manufacturers rinse, separate and store drums at their facilities for collection.
 In 1992, 348 textile plants reported recycling 91 percent of their metal dye drums, 84 percent of their plastic drums and 41 percent of their fiber drums. Although most empty metal, plastic and fiber drums are sent to local landfills, thanks to the industry-wide container management plan.
 While the industry's recycling rate has improved significantly in recent years, textile manufacturers for decades have sent most of their fabric cutting, selvage and cotton bale wastes to recyclers for reuse. Textile recyclers purchase and transport waste materials and recondition fibers to be sold for such products as ski parka insulation, mattress padding, automotive fabrics, diapers and sanitary products and tennis ball coverings. Recycled carpet fibers are used to make plastic wood for picnic tables, park benches and birdhouses.
 ATMI, the national trade association of the U.S. textile industry, provides economic, government relations, communications, international trade and product services in support of the industry.
 -0- 8/17/93
 /CONTACT: Deborah E. Anderson of the American Textile Manufacturers Institute, 202-862-0513 or, home, 703-476-6436/


CO: American Textile Manufacturers Institute ST: District of Columbia IN: TEX SU:

BR-RA -- AT011 -- 3677 08/17/93 15:47 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 17, 1993
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