INDIANA – The Indiana Recycling Coalition (IRC) announces it will change its name, rebrand, and launch a new website on Monday, November 15 – America Recycles Day – during a popup event from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m. at Davlan Park on Massachusetts Avenue in downtown Indianapolis.
The name change reflects the organization’s response to global, national, and statewide events – and an intentional expansion of focus to leverage Indiana’s unique combination of infrastructure, industries, workforce, and geographic advantages through the pursuit of a circular economy for the state.
In early 2018, the global disruption to recycling markets caused by China’s National Sword policy exposed flaws in the recycling system in the U.S. and presented many opportunities for the industry to reinvent itself by investing in technology, infrastructure, economic and policy tools, and education.
As the global COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt supply chains, energy prices, and commodity markets, the impact on consumers is at an all-time high. As they experience price increases and delays, there is an opportunity to educate the public about the interdependence of resource extraction, product design, manufacture, transportation, energy use, global markets, and waste materials – so that they can understand the impact of their individual actions and make informed decisions.
As the global community continues to grapple with the economic, social, and environmental fallout of China’s import restrictions and the COVID-19 pandemic, individuals in developed nations have become increasingly aware that recycling – on its own – is not a panacea for managing waste in our current consumption-focused society. As a result, the public’s trust in the US’s current recycling system has become strained. As an organization focused on education, the IRC is committed to providing truth and transparency – so that Hoosiers absolutely understand how, why, and where to recycle – but also, the limitations of recycling and its value within the broader circular economy.
“Deliberately removing the word ‘recycling’ from our name and rebranding allows us to zoom out, examine the role of recycling, and to re-emphasize all the other aspects of a circular economy which include reduce, reuse, repair, redesign, and more,” states IRC Executive Director Allyson Mitchell. “In doing so, we are able to form partnerships with a broader set of stakeholders, allowing us to engage a wider audience on the many ways the circular economy creates jobs, strengthens supply chains, improves communities, and protects the value of our natural resources – right here in Indiana.”
The nonprofit organization was created in 1989 to promote recycling, reuse, and sustainable materials management across the state through education and partnerships with organizations in government, the manufacturing industry, and the public at large. Although the IRC has rebranded in the past, this is the first time it has changed its name. Over the past several years, the organization developed and delivered programs focused beyond recycling, such as initiatives for composting, repurposing, and waste reduction. Therefore, this new identity is a continuation of the organization’s evolution; the structure and mission of the organization remain unchanged with education and advocacy activities as top priorities.
Pamela Francis, IRC Board President, states, “This is a big step in the organization’s evolution and one that has become increasingly necessary as we lean into our role as the authority on the circular economy in the state of Indiana. I am proud of the work Allyson and her staff have done to realize the goal of bringing the organization’s identity full circle and I look forward to seeing our impact expand.”
The IRC is hosting the pop-up from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. at Davlan Park on Mass Ave – just a few blocks west of the IRC office. The new website will be live for visitors to explore and donors to the organization will receive limited edition gifts with the new brand. The announcement coincides with the organization’s celebration of America Recycles Day, a national observance in the United States dedicated to promoting recycling across the nation. The public is invited to attend; registration via EventBrite is appreciated but not required.
Stay tuned to IRC’s website and social media channels for more details on the name change and rebrand the morning of Monday, November 15, 2021.