On September 14, 2016, APRA’s partner and close ally in plastics recycling, the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA) announced the winners of the 2016 Plastics Industry Leadership Awards at its annual Plastics Industry Leadership Awards Dinner. CPIA awards recognize outstanding individuals and businesses for their commitment and dedication to the growth and sustainability of the Canadian plastics industry.

CPIA President, Carol Hochu and APRA's Executive Director, Grant Cameron

CPIA President, Carol Hochu and APRA’s Executive Director, Grant Cameron

APRA’s Executive Director Grant Cameron was one of five individuals honoured with CPIA’s Lifetime Achievement Award for achievements and who contributed enduring legacies to Canada’s plastics industry.

As an active participant in the Alberta solid-waste and recycling industry for more than 25 years, Grant Cameron has hands-on experience in the collection, hauling and processing of metals, fibre and plastics. Grant has been involved with design, operation and policy at more than 75 Alberta landfills, transfer stations and recycling depots and was a pioneer in the collection of multi-material, post-consumer recyclables in rural Alberta.

Over his tenure at APRA he has executed the Association’s mission to facilitate the development of efficient and effective programs to manage plastics waste through the use of waste management options including reduction, reuse, recycling and energy recovery. Grant has made outstanding contributions to the plastics industry in Alberta and has been influential in Western Canada in advancing agricultural plastics recycling. He has been the boots on the ground, wearing the industry hat to shift recycling opportunities from potential to reality.

“As a friend and colleague, it has been an honour to work with Grant during his term as APRA’s executive director,” remarked APRA’s president Dave Schwass. “Grant’s passion for recycling plastics has led to the establishment of many programs that will continue to serve members, communities and the public in the future. He has educated his colleagues on best practices for environmental stewardship and positive economic outcomes.  On behalf of APRA we would like to thank him and congratulate him on his award.”

“Plastics recycling does not occur in a vacuum and can not exist as a stand-alone function. We can only succeed when we understand the fit of waste plastics as a component of larger solid-waste planning and commodity diversion,” commented Grant. “So for those of you who wish to pursue plastics diversion or participate in CPIA’s Post-Use efforts, I encourage you, whenever the opportunity arises, to tour engineered landfills and transfer stations. Visit recycling depots and especially, seek out invitations to tour large city MRFs and plastics processors. It’s only when we develop knowledge of collection, transportation, processing and marketing of all commodities along with available equipment and technologies that we are able to create solutions for plastics issues.”

Additionally, APRA would like to congratulate Krista Friesen, a member of APRA’s board of directors who received the Plastics Industry Young Leader Award, along with four other inspirational and dedicated young leaders who demonstrate leadership in plastics businesses, innovation or technical leadership and/or sustainability efforts. Recipients serve as a positive role model for young professionals thinking of entering the plastics industry.

Krista Friesen, Vice President Sustainability of the Canadian Plastics Industry Association (CPIA), has more than 15 years’ experience in designing and developing programs to manage end-of-life materials including plastics.  Since mid-2014, Friesen has been ably leading the development and execution of CPIA’s sustainability, advocacy and partnership programs to promote solutions that increase the recovery of plastics at their end-of-life.

“We are delighted to recognize and celebrate individuals and companies who have demonstrated leadership and excellence, contributing immensely to the plastics industry in the areas of innovation, sustainability and more.” said Carol Hochu, President and CEO of CPIA.