Recycling & It's Impact On Mining & Heavy Industrial

Recycling And The Impact On Mining & Heavy Industrial

Recycling & It's Impact On Mining & Heavy Industrial

Everyone is familiar with recycling. Whether you have a bin at home, reuse your grocery bags, or even just print documents at work double-sided. But today I encourage you to look at the bigger picture. How is recycling impacting the mining and heavy industrial world?

Recycling Nickel

Tesla has recently noted that the global supply of nickel is potentially a limiting factor in growth for battery production. Assuming the majority of my readers are in the United States, what does that mean? Where does the US even get its nickel (Ni)? There has only been one active Ni mine in the US in recent years, with a large amount of the world’s Ni production based in Canada.

There are, however, hundreds of recycling companies that pull valuable materials from used batteries. Every time you recycle a battery, you are preventing a potential environmental hazard from leaking into the environment. Additionally, you could be helping the advancement of one of the most innovative companies of our time.

Speaking to the environmental impact, I work to place candidates with one of the major recyclers in this space. I know firsthand that they stick to the strictest environmental standards, going above and beyond the regulations placed on them. In partnering with them to find top talent, I work directly to find the highest caliber of candidates who not only meet but exceed environmental standards.

Paper Recycling

Another industry I recruit in regularly is papermaking. I think most people can count on one hand the number of handwritten letters they have composed recently, but that doesn’t mean that paper is on the way out! Consider print advertising, packaging for consumables (food), and shipping. When you recycle that box from your favorite online retailer, it’s broken down for the production of more paper.

In addition to reducing the raw fiber materials (trees), you can help reduce the volume it would take in a landfill. When organic material breaks down, it creates gasses, something that landfills have had to learn to manage and utilize. Paper and wood mills alike use waste to generate their own utilities. This further saves a drain on solid-state fuels and natural gas. I worked with a gentleman who was able to generate more recovery power than a primary power generator at a major paper mill.

Additional High-Impact Areas

The list of mining and heavy industrial components impacted by recycling is long. Asphalt is recycled and reused. The fly ash from power generation contributes to the manufacturing of cement. The dust from certain types of steel manufacturing can be recycled to recover materials. I have worked with mining companies that create their own water collection and treatment facilities. They then design beautiful habitats for wildlife. Some of the country’s top engineers and specialists remain on staff to maintain a healthy environment.

For consumers and companies alike, there is plenty of room to make an impact. Whether on the environment, industry, or simply the availability of products you use every day. For employers in the mining & heavy industrial space, finding the best possible talent is not quite so easy. If you have found it challenging to recruit and hire talented candidates who share your passion and commitment to the environment, let’s talk. I can connect you with people who will help you achieve production goals, equipment availability, environmental commitment, or financial control and forecasting. Reach out to me so I can learn how to help your company discover the talent you need to continue making an impact.


Increased Sustainability in the Corrugated Packaging Industry

corrugated packaging

Environmental consciousness is a buzz word that we hear more and more. And with that, sustainability plays a huge part. In a previous article, I discuss that paper is one of the easiest and most inexpensive consumer products to recycle. In this article, I wanted to take a deeper dive into a big part of the paper industry, corrugated packaging.

We are seeing some trends in the paper industry that illustrate the commitment corrugated packaging companies are making to increase the sustainability of their products and protect the environment through their design, manufacturing, and sourcing.


Recyclable Materials:

The majority of corrugated packaging is comprised of between 70-100% recycled material. This is actually higher than the paper industry as a whole! Great packaging companies throughout the Midwest have been committed to sustainability long before it became mainstream. Green Bay Packaging, for example, “recycles old corrugated containers and mixed paper for reuse in the papermaking process for sustainable savings.” This not only maximizes cost savings for their partners, but it’s also a great use of renewable materials.

Right-Sized Packaging:

How many times have you received a package in the mail and asked yourself, “why did they ship this small item in such a massive box?” Many manufacturers nowadays are encouraging their customers to design smaller, right-sized packaging that reduces material waste.


So, you open that massive box, and you’re inundated with those annoying packing peanuts. Why did they pack a water bottle in a box big enough to hold a flat-screen tv? Who knows? Nowadays, companies are making those packing peanuts out of corn starch, thus making them biodegradable!


Wastewater Management:

From installing rain gardens to feed plants that absorb pollutants, to using a “closed-loop” treatment system, to developing site-specific strategies to improve the quality of stormwater discharge, these are just a few ways companies are successfully reducing the wastewater that enters into the sewer system.

Eco-Friendly Ink:

Over the last 50 years, the industry has made great strides in the advancement of eco-friendly ink. Although significant progress has been made with the introductions of vegetable, soy, and water-based inks, they are still not 100% renewable. However, in 2017, we saw the introduction of algae-based ink, which is renewable and biodegradable.

Energy Conservation:

Corrugated packaging contains a large percentage of recycled components, requiring significantly less energy to manufacture, compared to virgin pulp. Also, the advanced use of heat recovery hoods, steam recovery, and heat exchangers continues to reduce the amount of energy needed in the corrugated packaging industry.


Sustainable Forestry:

Through establishing protected areas, responsible harvesting, improved logging techniques, and proper training, companies are able to meet the demand of their customers while balancing the needs of the environment, wildlife, and forest communities.


With more and more companies creating right-sized packaging for their products, it not only significantly cuts back the amount of material waste, but also their carbon footprint by reducing the number of vehicles required to transport their products.

If you’re in the paper industry, give me a shout!

By 2020, the packaging industry will reach an estimated market value of $1 trillion. And in 2016 alone, the global production of paper and cardboard was 411 million metric tons. The production of paper and cardboard products will only increase as E-commerce continues to grow.

As a result, the need for employers to hire top talent is escalating. If you have a pulp and paper background, especially on the paper machine side, give me a shout! I have several exciting opportunities that you don’t want to miss! Whether you are fresh out of school or you’re an industry vet, reach out to me today to discuss some of these hot positions.

Pulp and Paper Industry

10 Interesting Facts About the Pulp and Paper Industry

The Pulp and Paper Industry has been around for centuries and it plays an integral role in our everyday lives. Without even realizing it, we use paper almost every single day. In fact, there are over 5,000 products made from paper and paper by-products. From napkins to coffee filters to even shipping materials, we use paper much more than we typically think about. Here are 10 interesting facts about the Pulp and Paper Industry that you may not have known.

10 interesting paper industry facts

  1. Paper was first invented in China in 100 B.C. and the paper industry was officially created in 105 A.D.
  2. Paper was originally made by mixing chopped bark, hemp, and water. Then, you’d press it flat and let it dry in the sun to form paper.
  3. The first patent issued for a continuous papermaking machine was in 1799 to Louis-Nicolas Robert in France.
  4. Benjamin Franklin was the first paper merchant in America. He also helped start 18 mills in Virginia and surrounding areas.
  5. The U.S. Pulp and Paper Industry produces 78 million tons of paper per year, valued at $187 billion. Additionally, it employs 373,400 people with an annual payroll of over $30 billion and an average salary of $81,300.
  6. Every year, Americans use about 70 million tons of paper and paperboard.
  7. A single pine tree can produce approximately 80,500 sheets of paper.
  8. Paper is one the easiest and most inexpensive consumer products to recycle, and worldwide, 65% of it is recovered.
  9. Since 1990, U.S. paper recovery has increased by 76%.
  10. Ironically, the United States’ printed “paper” money isn’t paper at all. It’s 75% cotton and 25% linen. So, the saying “money doesn’t grow on trees” is certainly true!

Looking for your next paper career opportunity?

The paper industry is full of interesting facts and plays a crucial role in all of our lives. So, if you work in the Pulp and Paper Industry and are looking for a new opportunity, my team and I have several exciting opportunities across the United States. Reach out to me if you’re ready for your next step in your career! Additionally, you can check out the Johnson Search Group job board. We have dozens of opportunities available across the country!