Work Examples



Below are links to selected work products, articles, presentations and other resources developed by Circular Matters team members in our effort to bring about the circular economy.  

White Paper on Chemical Recycling

Circular Matters developed a white paper for Winpak LTD about chemical recycling, describing the pros and cons of the technologies.

Winpak LTD recently commissioned Circular Matters LLC to develop a white paper  on chemical recycling.  In the white paper  different types of chemical recycling technologies are briefly described, and concerns about  and potential benefits  of chemical recycling are presented from different stakeholder perspectives.  The paper also explores the role that chemical recycling technologies can play in sustainable materials management. The current status of chemical recycling in the U.S. and Canada are also described, as well as what is needed to move chemical recycling forward.


Read the White Paper

Development of Policy Tools to Increase  Recycling

Recyclables in blue bin

Circular Matters has helped the Carton Council expand recycling in the U.S. through the use of proven policies and best practices. 

Because increasing recycling in general helps increase the quantity of cartons recycled, the Carton Council hired the Circular Matters Team to develop tools to enable  communities and states to implement policies that increase recycling activity. These tools also encourage the use of best practices to implement  policies and programs that maximize benefits. 

Circular Matters also worked with the Carton Council to develop a white paper on funding mechanisms to support recycling systems. This paper is being used by several leading organizations currently as they consider feasible funding options and their strengths and drawbacks.

Explore Policy Tools

U.S. EPA Sustainable Materials Management Vision and Framework for Action

Circular Matters developed a forward-looking Desired End State Vision and Framework for Action to catalyze the circular economy.

Circular Matters, with input from U.S. EPA  Region 4 and state agencies  developed a Vision and Framework for Action to implement sustainable materials management in Region 4.  It is envisioned that this vision will be shared with  other regions.

The Framework incorporates life cycle analysis and systems thinking, and calls for a holistic, integrated approach that focuses on using fewer resources, avoiding  toxics, and reducing environmental and social impacts. The Vision and Framework serves as guidance for all Region 4 states and provides a foundation for adoption in other EPA regions.

Read the Vision and Framework

Tools and Guidance for Preventing Litter

Circular Matters developed multiple guidance documents for Keep America Beautiful (KAB), the premier U.S. litter abatement organization, which empower local governments, KAB affiliates, and law enforcement agencies to effectively combat litter and illegal dumping.

The Circular Matters Team, while with RSE USA, developed several guidance documents and tools to help local and state governments effectively combat litter and illegal dumping.  The team conducted extensive research, including in-depth interviews with world renowned experts on litter abatement and law enforcement. Work products included:

  • A dynamic, searchable litter research database, providing the most current, respected academic research on litter abatement
  • Litter abatement curriculum for KAB affiliates 
  • Litter enforcement and prosecution guide

Read the Enforcement Guide

  • Litter and illegal dumping model ordinance

Read the Model Ordinance

  • Collaboration guide, to enable local governments to effectively collaborate with other organizations, agencies and entities to combat litter

Read the Collaboration Guide

Texas Recycling Market Development Plan

Texas’s Recycling Market Development Plan, while prepared for Texas, includes information that can help other states develop more robust recycling markets.

The Circular Matters Team worked on the Texas Recycling Market Development Plan.

Circular Matters played a leading role in developing the Texas Recycling Market Development Plan, with responsibility for the supply and demand analysis, assessment of barriers and opportunities, identification of strategy options, institutional analysis assessment of funding options and preparation of the state strategy for recycling market development. 

Read the Plan

Articles, White Papers and Presentations

Tim Buwalda, On-Demand Interview, “The Ins and Outs of Chemical Recycling,” Plastics Recycling Update,  March 2021

Circular Matters, White Paper on Recycle-Ready Packaging for Winpak, Ltd., December  2020.

Betsy Dorn, SustPack Conference, Domestic Recycling Market Development:  Key to Building a Circular U.S. Economy, March 12, 2020

Susan Bush, Resource Recycling, The Power of a Plan, February 11, 2019

Susan Bush and Betsy Dorn, Recycling Market Development in the U.S. — Looking Back and Looking Forward ,  January 2019

Susan Bush, U.S. EPA Sustainable Materials Management Academy, Pay As You Throw, July 26, 2018.

Susan Bush and Betsy Dorn, Resource Recycling, In Our Opinion — How to Develop Resilient Markets at Home, November 14, 2017

Susan Bush and Betsy Dorn, Resource Recycling, Shaping the Future, September 12, 2016