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LEED v5 Open for Comment–CDRA Responds

Construction material recycling has been an intrinsic part of green building since the concept was established 30 years ago. As a reflection of that, recycling credits have been a part of the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program since its start. However, there has been controversy around the credits since almost the beginning. To support the USGBC in ensuring the credits are properly awarded, for the past 15 years, the CDRA has engaged the organization’s Materials & Resources Technical Assistance Group (M&R TAG) to provide insight into the realities of C&D recycling.

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New Jersey’s Environmental Justice Law: A Potential Model for EJ National Focus

A version of this article appeared in a recent issue of EM Magazine, a publication of the Air & Waste Management Association. This is a more comprehensive update to a topic discussed in the May 2021 issue of the CDRA e-Newsletter. 

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NJ Only the Start, EJ Impact on Recycling Businesses Will Grow

According Matthew Tejada, Director of the U.S. EPA’s Office of Environmental Justice, who spoke at the virtual Annual Meeting of the Institute of the Scrap Recycling Industry, the tenets of environmental justice (EJ) include the belief that humans have the right to determine what is in their communities, including what industries. And some communities are never going to grant entry to specific types of industries (and might even work to remove what is already there). Waste facilities fall into that category of not often being wanted.

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NJ's Environmental Justice Law: A Potential Model for EJ National Focus

New Jersey’s recently enacted Environmental Justice Law is being characterized as one of the broadest in the United States and is seen as a potential legal model for other states and the federal government. The new law has gained the attention of President-Elect Joe Biden, who intends to establish an office concerning environmental justice within the Department of Justice. In short, the law requires evaluation of the impact of a facility on the surrounding community in connection with certain permits, and empowers the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) to deny permits if disproportionate impacts on an overburdened community are found.

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OSHA Expected To Increase Enforcement of Silica Rule

OSHA sent the CDRA a letter that outlines its next steps on enforcement of the employee silica exposure rule, including an increase in enforcement of the rule. The CDRA is passing this information to its members as a warning that OSHA inspectors will probably now be looking for dust violations more strenuously. It is expected this enforcement will vary by region and the individual decisions by the inspectors there, but please be aware OSHA has served notice of increased enforcement of the employee silica exposure rule on concrete recyclers, as well as many other aspects of the construction industry.

View OSHA "Silica Rule" Letter