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California's Recycling Challenge

With foreign countries restricting the import of recyclables, California can no longer rely on disposing of its waste streams out-of-state and out-of-mind. More than ever, California is challenged and committed to reduce waste at the source and recycle in-state. By establishing new rules and infrastructure to enable a statewide system that enables producers, local governments, and waste management companies to cleanly and efficiently process post-industrial and post-consumer products, California is poised to lead the nation.

To support California as it pursues its ambitious circular economy goals, CFEE has developed "California's Recycling Challenge" in partnership with the California Product Stewardship Council and the National Stewardship Action Council. This ongoing program leverages policy research tours and virtual conversations to explore best practices in materials management and recycling. By visiting cutting edge facilities and studying innovative policies, program participants deeply engage with the complex challenge to augment California policies and infrastructure to better manage the waste streams for nearly 40 million Californians.


"California's Recycling Challenge" puts key state policymakers and CFEE Board members in direct contact with leaders from other states and countries to share lessons learned and explore how California can embrace the circular economy. This work has facilitated the development of cutting edge policies like SB 54, "Truth in Labeling", adding wine and refillable bottles to the Bottle Bill, and much more.  

Research Tour to Denver, Boulder and Santa Fe (Summer 2024)


Central Valley Tour of a Materials Recovery Facility and Glass Manufacturing & Recycling Plant (Winter 2024)


Research Tour to Vancouver, British Columbia and Calgary & Banff, Alberta (Summer 2023)

Research Tour to Portland, Maine and Montreal, Quebec  (Summer 2022)

Research Tour to Vancouver, British Columbia and Toronto, Ontario  (Fall 2021)

Research Tour to Portland, Oregon and Seattle, Washington (Fall 2020)

Virtual Seminar (July 28, 2020)

Research Tour to Vancouver, British Columbia and Seattle, Washington (Summer 2019)

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