The 2021 ISRI Fall Meetings began Monday, Oct. 18, in Charleston, S.C. The meetings run through Wednesday, Oct. 20. Most of the meetings are open and free for ISRI members to attend. Register here.

Safe Operations Committee co-chairs Chris Bedell, senior vice president and general counsel at the David. A. Joseph Co., and David Borsuk, senior advisor at Sadoff Iron & Metal, convened the meeting at 2 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 18.

After the safety messages, Tony Smith, ISRI’s vice president of safety, reminded members that President Joe Biden announced Sept. 9 the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is developing an Emergency Temporary Standard that will require employers with 100 or more workers to ensure workers are fully vaccinated or show a negative test for COVID-19 at least once per week. Smith recommends that recyclers have updated COVID response plans onsite in case of OSHA inspections.

Ryan Nolte, Ph.D., ISRI’s director of safety outreach, announced the dates for the virtual Fall ISRI Safety and Environmental Conference. ISEC will be at 2 p.m. EDT on consecutive Tuesdays, Nov. 9, 16, and 23. Environmental, health and safety professionals from across the industry and government will share lessons learned, best practices, and more.

Smith reminded members that OSHA awarded ISRI $160,000 to fund fire safety education and training to recyclers and materials recovery facilities (MRF). Jeff Farano, Fire Task Force co-chair and corporate counsel at SA Recycling, updated attendees on a recent facilities tour SA Recycling conducted to educate Craig Landolt, Georgia’s state fire marshal, about recycling operations.

Farano also advised members on Los Angeles County’s proposal to require metal recycling facilities to be enclosed, potentially increasing the hazards to first responders in case of fire. “The concern is that if the county adopts it, many of the [surrounding] cities will look at it, and then it becomes a trend,” Farano says. California’s Department of Toxic Substance Control (DTSC) recently launched an emergency rulemaking process to amend California’s definition of metal from shredders. If the DTSC decides to treat shredder output as hazardous waste, recyclers would have 30 days from the date of the rule’s passage to apply for hazardous waste permits. Farano says if that happens, litigation to overturn the measure is likely.

Smith introduced Jerry Sjogren, formerly safety director at E.L. Harvey & Sons, as ISRI’s new senior safety director. Sjogren replaces Commodor Hall, who took a leadership job at Chick-fil-A Supply. Smith reiterated the ISRI safety team’s 2022 workplan, focused on outreach, digital communication, OneISRI, industry sustainability, and supporting other staff at ISRI. He noted that ISRI continues to evaluate lugger truck container securement standards.

David Wagger, Ph.D., ISRI chief scientist and director of environmental management, provided an update on two issues ISRI is following; the Center for Biological Diversity’s challenge to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s 2021 Multi-Sector General Permit, and the EPA’s proposed new testing method for the group of chemicals known as PFAS in substances other than drinking water.

ISRI will hold a webinar at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 10, titled Introduction to OSHA Inspection for the Scrap Recycling Industry. This online seminar will focus on the OSHA inspection process and some of the most common hazards seen in the recycling industry.

Fall meetings continue through Wednesday, Oct. 20. You may view the full schedule here.

Photo courtesy of ISRI.

Dan Hockensmith

Dan Hockensmith

I'm a native Ohioan who since 2014 has called Maryland home. My background includes print, broadcast, and digital journalism; government contracting; and marketing communications.