SWANA and CRRA Form Zero Waste Course and Certification Partnership

August 5, 2015

SWANA and CRRA Form Zero Waste Course and Certification Partnership


John H. Dane
Executive Director, CRRA

Caressa Morris
Marketing Coordinator, SWANA
1-800-GO-SWANA (467-9262)

Silver Spring, MD – The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) and the California Resource Recovery Association (CRRA) today announced the approval of a strategic partnership to develop and offer a Zero Waste Principles and Practices course and certification program throughout the United States and Canada.

"Many communities are adopting zero waste programs or working to achieve high diversion, even where they don’t call it zero waste,” said Michelle Leonard, incoming President of SWANA. “We are excited about the collaboration with CRRA on this project.  The fact that the two organizations are working together on it highlights the importance that both of us place on seeking advancement in how people consume resources and manage the byproducts – the waste – from that consumption.” 

The joint course is designed to provide students with a comprehensive knowledge of rapidly emerging public and private Zero Waste programs and the key principles that support these programs.

Members of both associations are the industry professionals often tasked with implementing integrated waste management systems in cities and counties.  The course will provide tools to help draw aspects of existing programs and new efforts together into community-specific Zero Waste Programs.

“We are really excited about this partnership with SWANA that allows us to leverage and improve upon CRRA’s previous Zero Waste certification program to establish the most comprehensive and thorough Zero Waste professional development program possible,” said President of the CRRA Board of Directors Rob Hilton.  “As we see Zero Waste and high diversion goals spreading to communities throughout North America, SWANA was an obvious partner to make sure the needs are met with a high-quality curriculum, rigorous certification standards, and to ultimately provide participants with a nationally-recognized certification that is meaningful to employers.”

The Zero Waste Principles and Practices Certification will be issued jointly by CRRA and SWANA and administered by SWANA as part of its certification program recognized in both the United States and Canada.

The partnership is the culmination of discussions that started in mid-2014 regarding the need to provide a professional, comprehensive and standardized approach to Zero Waste education. The contract for the development of the course was awarded to a project team headed by Kessler Consulting of Tampa, Florida.

The first classes will be offered in California and in the Washington, D.C. area, beginning mid-2016.     


CRRA is California’s state-wide recycling association and one of the oldest and largest non-profit recycling organizations in the United States.  A 501(c)(3), CRRA is dedicated to achieving environmental sustainability in and beyond California through Zero Waste strategies including product stewardship, waste prevention, reuse, recycling and composting. CRRA advances local, regional and statewide waste reduction efforts that result in critical environmental and climate protection outcomes. Its members, who represent all aspects of California’s reduce – reuse – recycle – compost economy, work for cities, counties, hauling companies, material processors, non-profit organizations, state agencies and allied professions.  For more information, visit www.CRRA.com.

SWANA is an organization of more than 8,300 public and private sector professionals committed to advancing from solid waste management to resource management through their shared emphasis on education, advocacy and research. For more than 50 years, SWANA has been the leading association in the solid waste management field. SWANA serves industry professionals through technical conferences, certifications, publications and a large offering of technical training courses. For more information, visit www.SWANA.org.

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