Global News

Issue 40, April 2016

News from the President

David Newman
David Newman

Dear Friends, Colleagues and ISWA Members


As expected this has been a very busy few weeks.  The two days rushing around Washington DC before Easter with ISWA MD Hermann Koller and SWANA CEO David Biderman and his Chairman Michelle Leonard, were tiring but very exciting.  We were promoting the World Congress of 2017 which will be held in neighbouring Baltimore and were received warmly by the World Bank, EPA, Waste Management Inc, UNEP and the GEF, the Clinton Climate Intitiative, the Chamber of Commerce, the Commerce Department and at the Capitol by Congressman Ellison, promoter of a Zero Waste Bill.  On top of all this we found time to hold a seminar with around 60 people representing companies and public sector.  Thanks again to David and Michelle for their warm welcome in beautiful DC.


Straight after Easter I headed to the other side of the world, Kuala Lumpur, were the WMAM hosted a very interesting Beacon Conference on Resource Management and the Circular Economy. Malaysia is a wonderful country and in 2018 will host the ISWA World Congress. We held very good meetings there, with the whole Board present for our quarterly meeting and with some speaking in the conference; we also met with many Malaysian Government officials- I personally sat at dinner with the Minister of Environment for three hours trying to convince him to think about organics recycling as a priority.  I think he was glad when I left !


Make sure you got all four future congress dates in your diaries: Serbia, USA, Malaysia and Spain.  The Serbian 2016 Congress has a great programme, rich in technical content and superb partnerhsips with international bodies. It will be a fascinating event.


Lastly, I attended the Health Care Waste conference in London on April 14th and had a very good time listening to the challenges these professionals face in handling what are some of our most dangerous waste streams. I am pleased to announce that our Working Group, lead by Anne Woolridge, has signed an agreement to cooperate with the WHO over the next three years to support WHO with professional  waste management expertise. Good work !


May is coming up, and another tour de force- the UNEP Environmental Assembly in Nairobi with our Vice President Carlos Silva and the Finnish Association’s national conference. There are many other ISWA events you can see in this Newsletter.


I am looking forward to the pleasure of meeting old friends and making new ones in these events. See you soon.

David Newman
President, ISWA

ISWA Beacon Conference in Kuala Lumpur

120 participants at the Beacon Conference in Kuala Lumpur
120 participants at the Beacon Conference in Kuala Lumpur
WMAM Chairman Ho De Leong
WMAM Chairman Ho De Leong
Lively panel discussions
Lively panel discussions
Splendid gala dinner
Splendid gala dinner

ISWA Beacon Conference on Circular Economy and Resource Management on 30th and 31st March 2016 in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

The 2nd Beacon conference organised by Waste Management Association of Malaysia (WMAM ) was attended  by 120 participants with 30 international  and 90 local participants. About 20 of the local delegates were students and young professionals. The international participants were from Singapore, Spain, Holland, Germany, India, Austria, Belgium, Taiwan, Thailand and Japan. 7 corporate sponsors contributed to the success of the event.

The Chairman of WMAM, Ho De Leong, gave the opening remark followed by Welcome speech by ISWA President, David Newman.  All the Board members supported the conference in the capacity of speakers and moderators in addition to the other invited speakers from Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Belgium and Austria.

The Gala Dinner was attended by 300 participants and was graced by The Honourable Minister of Urban Wellbeing, Housing And Local Government of Malaysia, Dato' Abdul Rahman Dahlan and His Excellency The Mayor of Kuala Lumpur City.

The 2nd day of the conference concluded with 2 very interesting speakers from Taiwan and Thailand's King of Recycling followed by a panel discussion on The viability and Sustainability of Circular Economy and Resource Management moderated by Antonis Mavropoulos with the panelists comprising Mr Philip Heylen, Vice Mayor of Antwerp, Prof Jae  Kwon from Korea, Dr Paudze and Mr Sivapalan from Malaysia Government Agencies and ISWA Board member, Atilio Savino from Argentina and  ISWA Vice  President, Carlos Filho  Silva from Brazil. 

The conference closed with final remark from the Chairman of WMAM followed by a Technical visit to a Newsprint Recycling Plant which recycles 90% of the country's old newspapers which was attended by 50 participants.

All in all it was a very successful event.



3R International Scientific Conference in Hanoi, Vietnam

ISWA MD Hermann Koller gave one of the keynote speeches
ISWA MD Hermann Koller gave one of the keynote speeches

The format of 3R International Scientific Conferences (3RINCs) started in Kyoto, Japan, in 2014 with an aim to provide a platform to exchange ideas and opinions among experts in the field of material cycles and waste management.


The 3rd 3RINCs, which was attended by about 350 participants from all around the world, was held in Hanoi, Vietnam, from 9 to 11 March 2016.


ISWA MD Hermann Koller gave a keynote speech about resource and waste management perspectives and challenges globally.


This event was hosted by Institute of Strategy and Policy on Natural Resources and Environment (ISPONRE) of Vietnam together with the Japan Society of Material Cycles and Waste Management (JSMCWM) and the Korean Society of Waste Management (KSWM) as co-hosts.


ISWA acted as an organizational supporter of this conference, as other organizations like UNCRD and the Japanese Ministry of the Environment.


The 4th 3RINCs will be held in New Deli, India, from March 8 to 10, 2017.

A donation for the ISWA Scholarship Programme of Euro 20,000

Dr. Luca Barilla
Dr. Luca Barilla donated 20,000 Euro. ISWA says thank you!
Children on La Chureca dumpsite, Nicaragua
Children on La Chureca dumpsite, Nicaragua
Timothy, Supervisor of the ISWA Scholarship Programme, with some of the 'ISWA kids' where they used to work before
Timothy, Supervisor of the ISWA Scholarship Programme, with some of the 'ISWA kids' where they used to work before
After 4 month of preparation the first 'ISWA kids' started with school in February!
After 4 month of preparation the first 'ISWA kids' started with school in February

Dr. Luca Barilla from the world-famous food industry family based in Parma, Italy, donated 20,000 Euro for the ISWA Scholarship Programme #tradingtrashforeducation.


ISWA is pleased to announce the generous gift of one of Italy’s most important industrial families towards the Scholarship programme in Nicaragua. Dr Luca Barilla has supported environmental and philanthropic programmes for many years and responded positively and immediately to our request for a donation. We take this opportunity of thanking him publicly.


This money will help us in bringing more kids from working on dumpsites to going to school. We will also be able to make the programme more sustainable by keeping the kids in the programme longer – possibly as long as they have a basic education which really gives them a sound basis for a better future.


The ISWA Scholarship Programme currently supports 25 children who formerly sorted garbage in dumpsites called Nueva Vida and La Chureca in Nicaragua. With the 20,000 USD donated by ISWA and the additional donations we received so far, the scholarship programme can be extended beginning of next school year: we will be able to support more children over a longer period than the originally planned two years, including books, uniforms, transportation, family allowances (in some cases, the child is the person working to provide for the family and they are not able to go to school for this reason), administration, tutoring and psychological counseling.


We would also like to take the occasion to thank all the other people who donated so far. Some of them want to remain anonymous, some of them authorised us to publicise their names:


Derek Greedy; Ana Margarida Gomez; Boris Becker; Olga Tita Sacasa; Jo Ann Sibert; Juel Bedford; Sandra Bouldry; Hugo Chavez; Carlos Jimenez: Brad Learmonth: Jon Gilman; Jonice Thompson; Daniel Nannapanenni; Angie Dewaard; Monica Kachwalla-Patel; Anissa Manfredi.


Thank you all very, very much!


You can make our world a little bit better, too.


If you would like to support the ISWA Scholarship Programme and help to bring more children from the dumpsite to the school desk then we invite you to make a donation. Your support, no matter what amount, is very much valued.


As a reference please enter 'ISWA Scholarship Programme'. Thank you. 


Unicredit Bank Austria AG, Schottengasse 6-8

A-1010 Vienna, Austria

Account holder: ISWA - International Solid Waste Association

IBAN: AT83 1200 0515 7400 2593



Find more information on the The ISWA Scholarship Programme here.


Timothy just finalised a page for the programme which includes stories, photos and a new video. Take a look at here:



Task Force Resource Management Webinar

Last month, members of the Task Force Resource Management were in Rome, Italy in connection with ISWA’s STC Meeting.


There they streamed a live webinar in which they held a lively Q&A session for the invited participants. Task Force Members Björn Appelqvist, Jane Gilbert and Martin Brocklehurst answered a number of questions on the waste industry and the circular economy, moderated by STC Chair Antonis Marvroupolos.


The webinar gave a topical approach, offering an insight into the important role the waste and resource industry must play in developing a circular economy which benefits our long-term environmental health.


You can read a detailed summary of the webinar and see the answers to some of the questions on the Waste Management World blog here.


ISWA's Task Force on Resource Management was established in 2014 to look into the potential for effective resource management and in particular the circular economy to drive economic growth. The Task Force has since produced 6 ground-breaking and insightful reports which we encourage you to check online. 



ISWA Working Groups: Spring Meetings Report

WGBTW Meeting in Rome, Italy
WGCS Meeting in Vienna, Austria
WGGL Meeting in Paris, France
WGHCW Meeting in London, UK

Working Group on Biological Treatment of Waste (WGBTW)

On 14 March the Working Group on Biological Treatment of Waste met in Rome, Italy, to discuss about its work programme for the next 3 years. The meeting was hosted by CIC, the Italian composting and biogas association. To enrich the group’s discussion about bio-waste as a resource for biotechnology solutions Mariagiovanna Vetere (Vice Chair of ISWA’s WG on Governance & Legal Issues) from NatureworksPLA and Carmine Pagnozzi from the Italian bioplastics association “Assobioplastiche” were invited. Furthermore, Vivek Agrawal, the Chair of the WG on Collection and Transport Technology, joined the meeting to foster the cooperation between the two working groups. The WG also welcomed for the first time Badar Al Mawali from be’ah, an ISWA platinum member from Oman.


Working Group on Communication and Social Issues (WGCS)

'Communicating an integrated approach in sustainable waste management' was the topic of the joint meeting of the Communication Working Groups of ISWA and CEWEP on 26 February in Vienna, Austria, which has been attended by 23 communication experts from 10 different countries. After an inspiring case example from Sweden presented by WGCS chair Gunilla Carlsson, the participants were invited to think of and elaborate in breakout sessions their overall view on trends and challenges that the waste sector globally and in their countries faces when communicating an integrated approach to waste management and circular economy.


ISWA Working Group on Governance and Legal Issues (WGGL)

Ten Waste management experts from 7 countries discussed issues like basic principles for codes of conduct, challenges related to the integration of the informal sector ('Waste pickers') and different approaches of financing MSW management at the ISWA Working Group on Governance and Legal Issues meeting held on 18 February in Paris, France. The WGGL members also discussed two special sessions which they will prepare for the ISWA World Congress 2016 in Novi Sad: one is titled “Good governance – Good Legislation – the key to improving waste management”, the title of the other one is “Time and Need for changes in EPR systems? – current status, challenges and perspectives”.


Working Group on Healthcare Waste (WGHCW)

The Working Group on Healthcare Waste met in London on the 13th of April, to discuss strategic cooperation with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the groups work programme for the next 3 years. The meeting was hosted by the Healthcare Waste and Resources Research Group of the University of Northampton at the St. Thomas Hospital. Dr. Ute Pieper, representative from the WHO, presented key focus areas of their work and future collaborative projects with ISWA. During the breakout session members were invited to elaborate ideas on how to closely align the groups work to the priorities of the STC and to propose ideas for cooperation with the WHO. Furthermore, the group discussed key linkages between the SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals) and healthcare waste. The working group meeting was followed by a two day conference on healthcare waste management, also hosted by the Healthcare Waste and Resources Research Group of the University of Northampton, and brought together over 80 participants from around the world.

LIPOR’s exemplary organic farming project

Horta à Porta” project provides 25m2 plots to citizens that wish to practice organic farming - for free!


In July 2003, ISWA Silver Member LIPOR launched the "Horta à Porta" ("kitchen garden in front of your door") project in an attempt to optimize space, information and the means that exist in this region. It met the need for interaction between several local entities, in order to define a strategy for Greater Porto (Portugal) in terms of home composting, the creation of kitchen gardens and promotion of organic farming.


This initiative creates useful and dynamic green spaces, promotes biodiversity and good agricultural practices, like home composting and organic farming, and also fosters the contact with nature, quality of life, subsistence and social responsibility. 


LIPOR provides 25 m2 plots to citizens that wish to practice organic farming and composting, with the purpose of providing fresh, tasty and authentic food, respecting, at the same time, the natural life cycles.


In addition to the plot, future farmers also get training on organic farming: crop rotation, non-use of synthetic chemical fertilisers, use of natural resources and preservation of the surrounding environment.


The products they cultivate are destined for their own consumption. Water, tool storage space and an individual composter or community composter is also provided for free. 


The "Horta à Porta" project currently provides a total of 1466 plots, most of them in urban areas. Almost 10,26 ha of organic farming that bears in mind environmental and social issues.


LIPOR – Intermunicipal Waste Management of Greater Porto - is ISWA Silver Member and responsible for the management, recovery and treatment of the Municipal Waste produced in eight associated municipalities in the north of Portugal.

Beacon Oslo, Study Tours, Winter School: ISWA Events in High Demand!

"Every last question" video from the ISWA-SWIS Winter School
Participants of the ISWA-SWIS Winter School
The City of Oslo, location of the Beacon Conference on Resourcing the Future

ISWA Events would like to say THANK YOU to our members, partners and participants for a powerful start to the year 2016! We aim to offer an international range of stimulating and relevant events and that provide the network and training you need for a sustainable waste management sector.  In these first few months alone, our Winter School on Landfill and Landfill Mining in Texas, was a great success (See the video to the left for the final thoughts of the participants); the Beacon Conference in Kuala Lumpur on Circular Economy & Resource Management was brimming with delegates and the imminent Study Tour on Collection, Sorting and Recycling is waiting list only! 


The popularity of our activities is due in great part, to the energetic input of our partners; they have a sharp eye for the trends shaping our sector and for the promising policy and technical solutions that need to radiate and develop in each country.  Another element is a focus on real-world applications – indeed, the 7th Study Tour on Waste to Energy this June which takes in 11 site visits in three countries, and is an annual favourite. Perhaps, an enjoyable aspect of the ISWA meetings is the international flavour, the chance to meet colleagues from all over the world. 


“Where else can you sit right next to a Minister or have a small talk with the director of a leading company in the waste management business?”


This is not just small talk – in an increasingly globalised world the opportunity to better understand the motivations and challenges of waste sector professionals in different contexts through interpersonal exchange can lead to new awareness, new partnerships, new product ideas, or even a market edge.  


We hope this will be the case at the ISWA World Congress  Forward Together, 19-21st September 2016, Novi Sad, Serbia this year, hopefully many more members from the upcoming tech hubs in Central and Eastern Europe will attend as well. You can expect a comprehensive line up of international speakers, plus friendly, modern hospitality in a beautiful city. By the way, there are Early Bird registration rates until 31st May 2016.


The next ISWA Beacon Conference – Resourcing the Future, 15-17th June 2016, Oslo, Norway is filling up fast as well. The spotlight will be on how to develop markets for recycled materials, new methods for measuring recycling, the Eco-design directive and the circular economy.  Register here to secure your place.


So thank you again for joining our events so actively this year, you make the network work! We encourage others if you are planning the year ahead and/or you have not yet been to an ISWA event to check out the ISWA calendar and register early to avoid disappointment. 

See you at the ISWA stand at IFAT 2016

Visit us at the ISWA stand in exhibition hall B2.339/428
The ISWA booth at IFAT 2014
The ISWA booth at IFAT 2014
Check out the ISWA YPG potential at IFAT 2016!
Check out the ISWA YPG potential at IFAT 2016!

IFAT – ‘the world’s leading trade international fair for water, sewage, waste and raw materials management’ takes place at the exhibition halls at Messe Munich in Germany from May 30th to June 3rd 2016.  


This year promises to be another mega-event featuring industry giants, as well as innovative new-comers and the prestigious Green Tech Awards.  With live demonstrations of major hardware (see car recycling and trucks in action!) and a comprehensive support programme of knowledge transfer, policy debate and business networking; there is surely something inspiring for everyone! ISWA, will certainly be there to join the action.  


See you at the ISWA stand at IFAT 2016 - Highlights


Highlights of the ISWA programme include our exclusive Members’ Business Lunch on Wednesday 1st June 11am - 3 pm with our President Mr. David Newman. Get a personal introduction to ISWA at the Meet ISWA in Germany presentation on Monday 30th at 3pm. Of course ISWA Technical Experts will be available daily, as well as information on our popular international events and promotions.  Come and get insider information on the ISWA World Congress in Novi Sad in 19-21st September 2016. And members: do drop by and pick up your brand new ISWA pin!


Meet our competent and confident cadre of Young Professionals. The Young Professionals Group (YPG) was founded in 2013, currently it has 40 members from 23 countries, meeting online but also in regional offline groups too. They are an ambitious and eager group, engaging with experts and the wider public to promote new ideas and technology transfer and with campaigns to push waste management up the political and funding agenda of national governments.  Did you know that you can support the upcoming professionals through a mentorship programme? Meet YPG at IFAT on Tuesday, 31st May, 4-6 pm and check out their potential on Wednesday, 1st June 1, 4-6 pm.   


Last but not least: ISWA is again offering free IFAT day passes! Please contact the ISWA General Secretariat at with the subject line “IFAT Day Passes” stating how many you require (up to five per person).  If you would like to organise a delegation of five or more persons to IFAT, do be in touch.


See you at the ISWA stand in exhibition hall B2.339/428, Messe, Munich, May 30th to June 3rd 2016.


You can find out more about IFAT, the programme and the various exhibitors here.

Update on the ISWA World Congress Novi Sad 19-21 September 2016



Preparation for the World Congress in Novi Sad this year are in ‘full swing’, with the abstract submission period now closed, there are 460 submissions to be sorted and selected for presentation.


In just a few weeks the full programme plan will be published, launched with key note speakers on Monday 19th September at 10.30 and a ceremonial opening in the evening at the Serbian National Theatre. Under the dynamic theme of moving Forward Together, there will be a broad spectrum of topics covered at Novi Sad: from pragmatic waste collection systems for a variety of inputs such as bio waste, building waste and packaging etc. to frontier concepts such as urban mining and anthropogenic resources and trends in waste management education. In addition to presentations, bilateral meetings and workshops, there will also be technical tours throughout the three days.


The Congress will culminate on Wednesday 21st September at 2pm and up to 1,000 participants are expected overall. This is a special opportunity to experience Serbia as a modern country; open for business and with a rich cultural history.


There is still time to test your knowledge and take part in the quiz: – it just takes a few minutes of your time and the winner will receive free entry to the World Congress in Novi Sad.


And to be doubly-sure of your place, don’t miss the Early Bird registration rates available until 31st May 2016, for more information visit the website:



ISWA Video Award 2016: Enter and win 1,500 Euros!

We are pleased to announce the 2016 edition of ISWA's online short video competition known as “ISWA Video Award” is now open for submissions. 


The theme of the contest is ‘Waste’. Entries shall explore the theme ‘Waste’ as one of the major global problems of our society in an original, witty way.


Whether documentary, fiction, animation or a combination thereof - the decision about the film genre as well as the technical realisation is left up to the contestant. Only the length of the film is specified. The video must be minimum 30 seconds and should not exceed a total duration of 80 seconds.


Take a look at last year's winners for inspiration.


The competition is open to individual entrants aged over 18 only, not to, or in association with any business or organisation.


The Prize for the Winner is 1,500 Euros, for the second place 750 Euros.


The award presentation will take place at the ISWA 2016 World Congress in Novi Sad, Serbia.


Deadline for entries is 29 May 2016.


Participation in the Competition is subject to these Competition Terms and Conditions which also contain a link to the online entry form.


We are looking forward to your submissions!

Introducing ISWA’s Latest Honorary Member

ISWA Honorary Member Günay Kocasoy
ISWA Honorary Member Günay Kocasoy

At last year’s General Assembly, the Board of ISWA honoured one of our longest standing members, Günay Kocasoy of Turkey. Günay has represented the Turkish National Committee on Solid Waste, ISWA’s National Member in Turkey, since its inception in 1996.


During her 20 years as an ISWA Member, Günay has been a member of the ISWA Board representing the South-East Europe, Mediterranean and Middle East Regional Development Network, served on the editorial board for Waste Management & Research, was an active member Working Group on Landfill and was the Chair of the 2002 ISWA World Congress Organising Committee, held in İstanbul, Turkey.


Aside from her activities with ISWA, Günay has worked extensively in promoting sustainable waste management through her academic career with Bosphorus University, Institute of Environmental Sciences, Turkey.  Her research fields include solid waste technologies, sludge, environmental management systems and water and wastewater treatment technologies, with over 300 publications to her name.


We are pleased to have Günay as an honorary member of ISWA and we look forward to continuing our cooperation with her as the National Member representative in Turkey.

New Gold Member: Klarwin, Romania

We are pleased to welcome a new Gold Member of ISWA!


Klarwin® is one of the most dynamic and ambitious Eastern European companies operating in the particular field of process engineering, highly skilled and reputed business partner, providing an impressive range of customized solutions for fluid filtration, separation and purification, across many industries like food & beverages, pharmaceutical, automotive, energy, chemical, petrochemical, aeronautical and probably the best competence in municipal domestic waste landfill environmental protection technology.


Fluid Perfection® is the promise that drives Klarwin®. This promise is sustained and nurtured by the company’s strong engineering capability to design and implement the best solutions for industrial processes optimization and by deploying state of the art technologies provided by worldwide leaders which are represented by Klarwin® on regional markets.


With a commitment to excellence, knowledge, long term partnership with both clients and suppliers, diligence and integrity of relationship, Klarwin® is definitely more than a team of top engineers who think, design and implement solutions. Klarwin® is a win-win-win business proposition: for the benefit of business customers, for the best representation of the elite technology suppliers in the field, and ultimately for the company's development.

For more information, please contact us at: 



Process Engineering SRL Eufrosin Poteca no 26, district 2

021764 Bucharest



Tel.: +40 21 313 547 3 

New Gold Member: DOWA ECO SYSTEM Co., Ltd., Japan

We are pleased to welcome another new Gold Member of ISWA!


DOWA ECO-SYSTEM Co., Ltd. (DES) provides comprehensive environmental service based on problem-solving methodology towards the reduction of environmental risk and the realization of a recycle-oriented society.


DES corporate philosophy is “Promoting the formation of an environmentally sustainable society through recycling resources.


DES is a subsidiary company of DOWA Holdings Co., Ltd., established in 1884 as a mining & smelting company. DES was established in 2006 in order to focus on Environmental Management & Recycling.


DES offers services in non-ferrous and precious metal recycling, waste treatment (toxic and general waste), contaminated soil/ground water investigation and remediation, logistics and environmental consulting. DES takes advantage of our advanced technology


Non-ferrous and precious metal recycling was developed in DOWA's long-standing mining and refinement operations to extract precious metals. DES is engaged in the recovery over 20 elements from printed circuit boards, mobile phones, electronics appliances and devices etc. We import E-scrap from all over the world, and refining them in Japan and Singapore.


We operate wide range of waste treatment; hazardous waste incineration, waste to energy, stabilization, sorting, purification and landfill.


Currently, DES has business network of waste treatment and recycling facilities in Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar and China.


For more information, please contact us at:



22F, Akihabara UDX, 4-14-1

Sotokanda, Chiyoda-ku

101-0021 TOKYO



Phone: +81-3-6847-1230

Fax: +81-3-6847-7027 

The ISWA Team continues to grow - welcome to one new staff member!

Georgina Nitzsche, our new Event Coordinator
Georgina Nitzsche, our new Event Coordinator

Following a restructuring of the General Secretariat, the ISWA team has grown further and we are delighted to welcome one new colleague who joined in March 2016.


Georgina Nitzsche, Event Coordinator, will be supporting the Member Service and Event Management team. Georgina originally comes from the UK. Welcome!


With Georgina the ISWA Headquarters now has 12 employees who come from 6 different countries: Austria, Germany, Hungary, UK, China and IndiaWe are delighted to have them all on board the ISWA team, enabling us to achieve our ambitious targets for the coming years and strengthening our position as the world’s leading network to facilitating and driving sustainable resource & waste management globally.

ISWA Profile: Gijs Langeveld (The Netherlands)

Gijs Langeveld
Gijs Langeveld

Name and current position in ISWA

Gijs Langeveld – Chair ISWA Young Professionals Group


Company and current position in your company 

Project Gijs – Advisor and project manager

BinBang – CFO and


What is your background?

Key words for my professional background are international development, sustainable waste management and entrepreneurship.  I have studied both human geography and economics. During these two masters I have focused on international development. My best memory to my study period is when I lived in Panama for my thesis on economic impact of the port development. I really enjoyed working with different cultures, entrepreneurs and living in a tropical climate.


Did you always work in the waste industry?

Sometimes it feels like that…. Now I am working in the waste industry for 7 years as a project manager. Before that I have worked in international trade development of developing countries. For 3 years I have organized training activities to entrepreneurs who are aiming to increase their export to Europe. It was the perfect job to start my career to learn project management skills, leading professionals and negotiating with different stakeholders. Working intensively with entrepreneurs is great: I liked their positive and pro-active approach. That´s when I realized I needed to become one myself to experience entrepreneurship. When I started my own company, my first assignment was by coincidence at a company within the waste industry. That´s where I learned to love this sector: it is a great mix between policy, economics, people´s behaviour, technologies, health and environmental issues. It is this love gives me sometimes the feeling of working for decades in this sector….


Did you ever have a mentor or someone you found inspirational?

I learn the most from the people I closely work with: hands-on learning on the job. Therefore I always try to work with people who I can learn from with other backgrounds, insights or skills. If you really get to know each other and respect both sides, that´s value for lifetime. For example my first manager Bas van den Brink was really like a mentor to me. Nowadays, I consider him as one of my best friends.


What would you say is your greatest achievement to date?

I am really proud of the sessions our Young Professional Group organized during the ISWA World Congress 2015 in Antwerp. In the first part we organized a workshop in which the participants created a pitch for a new company within the waste management industry. Six pitches from six tables. During the second part we had a great panel to whom the best business ideas were pitched. It was amazing to feel the energy of getting people into contact with each other and creating something together. One of the pitched business ideas has even become a real business last year. It felt great to be a designer of and facilitator to the process. I am counting on the same energy during our Young Professional sessions in Serbia this year.


More in general, setting up the Young Professional Group within ISWA since its start in 2013 has been a major joined achievement of all members. We have now more than 50 members, a website running, online and offline discussion and career events, a mentorship programme, setup of reginal networks and projects on the Global Waste Management Outlook and transfer of available technologies within the industry.


Best advice that you ever received?

Just do it…


When not working, I enjoy...

A diner with family and friends.

Outdoor activities in the woods, on water or in the mountains.


Why did you decide to become part of ISWA?

Personal interest: in search of new insights and getting into contact with new people within the industry. 


When did you become nominated to your current position in ISWA?

2015. The position of chair for the Young Professional Group is for one year to keep the new energy flowing….


What do you think is the biggest challenge facing the waste industry today?

Challenges differ between regions from solving health issues to new business models which get more value out of waste. One of the challenges in Europe I am addressing, is smart collection of waste as a resource in urban metropolitan areas with high density. 90 percent of our behaviour is programmed. How can we influence this? That´s why we will start pilots which incorporate the most important insights from behavioural science. It is a project which I am coordinating with 11 partners. Among them is NVRD (the national ISWA member) and 8 municipalities like Amsterdam, The Hague and Rotterdam.


In your opinion, what are the industry’s strengths and weaknesses?

S: Technical knowhow

S: Economies (economies of scale, business cases, entrepreneurship)

W: international policy setting (why is climate change still on top?)

W: Getting forward with new innovations.  


Where do you see, if any, market opportunities for the waste industry?

One of the market opportunities we are addressing with BinBang is how to support people separating their waste indoor. Especially if you are living in a small apartment, separating your waste is a challenge. That is why we have developed a space efficient and nicely designed bin. And next to the bin, we provide people supporting their good behaviour with a bang: Less waste more resources….


What do you think the future holds for the waste industry?

There are so many market opportunities out there. We need to search for smart connections with other sectors to innovate such as smart and green cities in metropolitan areas, internet of things, the chemical sector (for high end product from specific waste streams), and insights from behavioural science. The question is will there be enough skilled entrepreneurs to capture on all of these opportunities….

ISWA 3 Months Trial Membership

ISWA 3 Months Trial Membership

The ISWA 3 Months Tiral Membership - the perfect opportunity to become familiar with our Association's work and activities. It's a convenient and easy way to decide if you wish to join ISWA as a regular member. Sign up now!

News from around the Globe

AUSTRALIA: pilot diverts power tool batteries from landfill

The Australian Battery Recycling Initiative’s (ABRI) pilot project to collect and recycle used power tool batteries has seen 800 kilograms of batteries returned to Brisbane hardware stores since its launch in September.


Under the Power Tool BatteryBack scheme, which is funded by Queensland’s Department of Environment and Heritage Protection, any power tool battery weighing less than 500 grams can be returned free of charge to one of 18 participating outlets in the Brisbane City Council area until 30 June 2016.


Environment Minister Dr Steven Miles said: “This is an excellent result in such a short time, largely due to the efforts of DIY-ers and tradies in bringing their power tool batteries back for recycling. 


For the full story, please visit Waste Management Review

JAPAN: Plastic-eating bacteria could help revolutionise recycling

A team of researchers at Kyoto University report in an article in Science magazine that they have isolated a strain of bacteria that can “break down and metabolise plastic.” That’s right: they have found bacteria that love to chow down plastic. The Japanese researchers spent five years examining 250 samples taken from a plastic-recycling facility in the Japanese city of Sakai before they isolated a new species of bacteria – Ideonella sakaiensis – that could live on the most common type of polyester, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), which is widely used in bottles, containers, packages, synthetic clothing and other consumer products.


It isn’t the first time that plastic-eating microbes have been discovered and hailed as the potential new heroes of our rubbish-strewn planet. During an expedition to the Amazon a group of researchers from Yale University in the US discovered a fungus, pestalotiopsis microspora that can break down polyurethane, a commonly used industrial plastic.



For the full story, please visit Clean Malaysia

UK: Link to Link: Driving Resource Efficiency Across Supply Chains

The All-Party Parliamentary Sustainable Resource Group has brought together industry experts and 10 case studies, covering how each stage of the supply chain can become more resource-efficient and cut waste, examining how this can be done.


The report features a contribution from the Knowledge Transfer Network's Ben Peace, as well as other contributors including influential experts from SUEZ, GJF Fabrications, the University of Northampton, WRc, Feed-back, Northampton Business School, WRAP, Eunomia Research & Consulting, Royal Holloway University of London and Greenclick. 


To read the report, click here.

EU: EU vows tough enforcement of circular economy package

The circular economy package of waste and recycling laws will be backed by tougher European Commission enforcement than seen under previous administrations, an official yesterday (5 April) told plastic industry delegates.


Fulvia Raffaelli, deputy head of unit at DG Grow, the lead department on the Package, said the current Juncker Commission was “more committed” to policing its rules than its predecessor, the Barroso administration.


But the circular economy package would not be allowed to harm the international competitiveness of European industry, warned Giovanni La Via, chairman of the European Parliament’s Environment Committee.


The rules, subject to approval by the Parliament and the Council of Ministers, are a first step to adapting the economy to a future of finite resources and a booming population by ensuring as little is wasted as possible.


For the full story, please visit

UK: Green energy from Cumbrian cheese

One of the UK's largest cheese creameries, First Milk, has announced the completion of a giant on-site anaerobic digestion (AD) plant which is feeding bio-methane to the national gas grid. The new AD plant will supply up to 25% of the First Milk creamery’s energy requirements


The new AD plant will supply up to 25% of the First Milk creamery’s energy requirements


The £10m project has been designed and built for Lake District Biogas, which will operate the AD plant for two years, taking feedstock from First Milk’s Aspatria creamery site in Cumbria.


Commissioned by British on-site treatment solutions provider Clearfleau, the facility will produce more than £3m in cost savings and revenue per annum, and supply up to 25% of the creamery’s energy requirements.


When the plant is operating at full capacity later this spring, it will treat 1,650m3 per day of process waste and generate around 5MW of thermal energy exclusively by digesting cheese making residues. The plant will generate 1000m3 of biogas per hour, of which over 80% will be upgraded for injection into the national grid.


Revenue benefits will include 20-year index-linked, government-backed incentives from the Feed-in Tariff (£1m) and Renewable Heat Incentive (£2m), while the system will also help reduce waste management costs.


For the full story, please visit

USA: MIT researchers convert waste gas into liquid fuel

Researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have discovered a form of bioconversion that could be used to convert waste gases to biodiesel for transportation.


The 'Integrated bioprocess for conversion of gaseous substrates to liquids' report, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal, describes the process of converting syngas – synthetic gas that predominantly includes a mixture hydrogen, carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide – into liquid lipids that can be used as fuels.


The bioconversion involves two main steps, the first of which processes syngas into acetic acid (concentrated vinegar) in an anaerobic bioreactor using bacteria. The acetic acid is then used as a substrate for an oil-producing yeast, which aerobically converts it into lipids.


Scientists say the bioprocess has been trialled successfully at a pilot plant in China. The productivity was found to be 0.19 grammes per litre of acid per hour, although the authors claim that "the system can be further optimised".



For the full story, please visit Biofuels International