Deep Dive

Technology Innovations in the Waste Industry (2.5 CEUs)

Wednesday, August 22
3:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Delta D

This session will provide an overview of new cutting edge waste processing and recyclable processing equipment and how it can be used to reduce contamination and increase product marketability and productivity.

Key business takeaways from this session:

  • Waste and recycling processing equipment is changing at a rapid pace
  • New technology can be used to reduce operating expense while at the same time, improve recyclable material quality
  • More materials can be recovered than ever before


Charles Winum, Waste Equipment Sales Director, Steinert US

Charles Winum

Beginning a waste career with Sturton-Gill Engineering in Melbourne Australia in 1999, was Charles Winum’s first introduction to the world of magnetic separation technologies. Since then the Steinert group acquired Sturton-Gill and Mr. Winum with it, which allowed a move back to the USA in 2009 as Manager of the U.S. Waste Market for the newly formed Steinert US subsidiary in Cincinnati. Mr. Winum is proud to be a part of an ever-expanding multi-industry technology into X-ray, near infra-red, induction, laser and color applications, which today leaves us with a sense of the possibilities for future material separation and profitability!

Matanya Horowitz, CEO, AMP Robotics

Matanya Horowitz

Dr. Matanya Horowitz is the Founder and CEO of AMP Robotics, a startup formed in 2015 with the goal of changing the fundamental economics of recycling using robotics and artificial intelligence. AMP’s systems include robotics for waste sorting as well as artificial intelligence for data and analytics within recovery facilities. Dr. Horowitz graduated with a PhD in Control and Dynamical Systems from the California Institute of Technology with publications and research in machine learning, path planning, computer vision and stochastic optimal control.

Chris Eichelberger, Vice President, Technical Marketing, Agru America, Inc.

Chris Eichelberger

Chris Eichelberger currently serves as Vice President, Technical Marketing for Agru America, a leading manufacturer of geomembrane, geocomposites, GCL’s, large diameter pipe and fittings. His role includes oversight of the company’s complete geosynthetics product line, including sales of the ClosureTurf® system. He holds a bachelor’s degree from The Pennsylvania State University, 17 years of experience in the geosynthetics industry, and currently serves on the board of directors for the International Association of Geosynthetic Installers.

Susan Graff, Vice President, Principal, Global Corporate Sustainability, Resource Recycling Systems

Susan Graff

Susan Graff is Vice President of Global Corporate Sustainability at Resource Recycling Systems. For over 30 years, Ms. Graff has provided individual and collaborative sustainability and materials management solutions to both industrial and government clients focused on reducing material and energy consumption while increasing recycling value capture. She led the development of The Sustainability Scorecard, an RRS analytic tool used by consumer brands and manufacturers to establish business goals, strategy, metrics, and employee training that improved a company’s sustainability profile. Ms. Graff spearheads a variety of RRS collective action projects including Materials Recovery for the Future (MRFF) and Beyond 34. She also serves on the REMADE Institute Technical Advisory Committee to advance manufacturing a sustainable future. Prior to RRS, Ms. Graff founded ERS Global, a sustainability consultancy that served Fortune 200 clients with enterprise wide sustainability program development. Having begun her career at the US EPA serving in several senior roles at the Southeast Region and Headquarters offices, Ms. Graff was responsible for waste management, policy development, environmental risk assessment, and public/private partnerships.


Materials Recovery for the Future: Can we Capture more Value from Today’s MRF Infeed?

High quality product bales are more important than ever to the economic health of municipal recycling facilities (MRFs) largely due to global recycling market disruption and new quality standards. At the same time the consumer packaging stream has changed. For example, each year six million tons of flexible packaging (including resealable pouches, snack bags, overwraps and pet food bags) is generated by consumers. These materials challenge traditional MRF single stream sorting systems as wishful consumers of flexible packaging increasingly send them to MRFs. Here they become costly contaminants of paper bales destined for the landfill.

What if an economically viable and nationally scalable solution could be developed to recycle flexible packaging and improve the quality of fiber bales? The Materials Recovery for the Future (MRFF) program formed with a vision that flexible packaging be recycled curbside, and the recovery community capture value from it . MRFF lays out, for the first time, a transparent, evidence-based analytical pathway to accept a new material with potential end market value in a recycling program.

MRFF recently completed a comprehensive multi-year testing program with the recycling industry to launch a proof of concept pilot, and has developed a partnership with an integrated waste management company that owns a state-of-the-art MRF to conduct the pilot. This program is piloting a new automated MRF system design to sort to specified quality levels and purity, producing a stable supply of flexible packaging feedstock for use in a diverse set of recycled product end markets. The sorting protocols established will have the added benefits of separating two-dimensional plastics from paper, increasing the quality of the paper bales. The research includes detailed net system cost modeling for future use by municipalities and MRFs.

This research design is providing a very important, needed, and exciting element to adapting new materials to post- consumer recycling systems—a method for acceptance of new materials. This presentation will provide highlights and perspective from the private sector investors involved: the MRF, plastics recyclers, consumer brands and retail—to expand dialogue on how to collaborate across the recovery value chain to help the recycling industry be successful.

Steven Viny, CEO, Envision Holdings

Steve Viny

Steven M. Viny is the CEO of Envision Waste Services, LLC. Mr. Viny has over 36 years of experience in the Solid Waste Industry including the design, construction, operation, and ownership of sanitary landfills, C&D landfills, transfer stations, recycling plants, compost facilities, and waste hauling operations. Over 20 years ago, Mr. Viny developed the original concept for a mixed waste processing facility known as the Medina County Central Processing Facility (CPF). He designed, built and has operated the CPF since its inception. Through its history, the Medina CPF was the recipient of the Silver Award for Recycling from the Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), received recognition from the Governor of the State of Ohio, has been the subject of numerous journal articles and has been toured by tens of thousands of visitors from areas around the globe. Mr. Viny and his staff have earned a “Perfect Record” for operations and have never missed a single day of operations since the opening of the CPF in June of 1993. Mr. Viny and his staff have also earned a “Perfect Record” for the marketing of recyclables without a single load of any commodity rejected over a 20 year period. Mr. Viny recently developed the miniMRFTM system for mixed waste processing. The miniMRFTM is highly automated and features and extremely high throughput capacity while occupying a very small space. When coupled with the engineered fuel module, miniMRFTM has the capability to divert nearly 70% of the waste it processes into saleable recyclable products. A full scale miniMRFTM system has successfully operated for five years and the system has already earned industry recognition as one of the most efficient and cost effective solutions for waste diversion. Mr. Viny is well recognized in the solid waste industry. He received the Enterprise Innovation Award from the Case Western Reserve University Weatherhead School of Management and Enterprise Development Inc. and holds two United States Patents for the separation of solid waste. Mr. Viny is a recipient of the Professional Achievement Award from SWANA—their highest honor. He was elected International President of SWANA in 2000 and is the only private sector president in the association’s history. Mr. Viny received the Special Award from the Association of Ohio Recyclers and recently received the Achievement in Excellence Award from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Mr. Viny was awarded an Honorary Life Membership from SWANA for his contributions and achievements to the Association and to the Solid Waste Industry. Mr. Viny has been recognized by SWANA with certification as a Manager of Landfill Operations, Manager of Recycling Systems, Manager of Transfer Stations, and a Manager of Collection Systems. Mr. Viny has been recognized by the Association of Energy Engineers as a Certified Cogeneration Professional. Mr. Viny received the first Class 1 Compost Permit ever issued by the State of Ohio. This facility, located in Medina County, Ohio is designed to compost mixed organics such as food waste and yard waste. In 1998, Mr. Viny designed, built, and operated the City of Flagstaff Material Recovery Facility, which is designed to process commingled recyclables. The facility serves as a benchmark for recycling in Northern Arizona. Mr. Viny started a rubbish hauling company in Cleveland, Ohio and in Northern Arizona where he also designed and operated a recycling program for the Grand Canyon National Park. Mr. Viny has published numerous articles and has been a frequent speaker at many conferences including Waste Conversion congress 2011, Biocycle, NRC, NSWMA, and SWANA as well as International Environmental Symposiums such as Resource '95 in Davos, Switzerland and EMPA in Geneva, Switzerland. Mr. Viny currently serves as a Director for the Ohio Buckeye Chapter of SWANA. Mr. Viny represented the United States and Canada at the International Solid Waste Association (ISWA) Annual Director’s Meeting in Paris, France in 2000. He has held seminars throughout the State of Ohio on topics such as recycling, resource recovery, and new legislation and has assisted in new membership development.