January begins the national conference season for hazardous waste management, and herein we list—and briefly describe—24 worthies in chronological order. Browse them all—or click the month below that contains the days you want to be out of the office with limited access to email.
And BTW, we didn’t forget September and December. There ain’t nothin’ for those there months. But in case we’re wrong, please email us to let us know!
The 18th annual gathering known as Cleantech Forum San Francisco promises opportunities “to learn, network, and get deals done.” It brings together corporate executives, startup and growth company CEOs, investors, government agencies, and other luminaries from across diverse environmental disciplines who touch upon hazardous material removal.
Compost 2020 is the annual conference of the US Composting Council, purported to be “the largest gathering of organics recycling professionals anywhere.” Exhibitors and attendees include “municipal and solid waste and recycling program managers, equipment suppliers, consultants, and educators.”
The Plastics Recycling conference is for plastic reclaimers, equipment manufacturers, brand owners, brokers, government officials, and other worldwide authorities on sustainability. Last year the event had nearly 2000 attendees from 35 countries and had 200+ exhibitors. Expect panel discussions and Q&As featuring leading industry executives, reclaimers, and associations.
The premier event for municipalities, plumbers, portable sanitation, septic contractors, sewer contractors, and wastewater professionals—the initials stand for Water & Wastewater Equipment, Treatment, and Transport. It’s the wastewater industry’s largest annual event, and it includes a Marketplace Expo, as well as over 100 sessions and seminars, which include opportunities for various certifications.
Nearby to Palm Springs and self-described as “North America’s #1 technical conference for research and case studies on waste management,” this conference promises hobnobbing opportunities with “solid waste professionals and decision-makers from around the world,” which sounds exciting, albeit a bit short of incidentally bumping into JLo at a hospitality tent. Your registration includes the welcoming reception, as well as all continental breakfasts, coffee breaks, lunches, cocktail receptions, networking events, and access to tabletop exhibits. And did we mention golf? The Indian Wells Golf Resort features a course designed by John Fought.
The National Oil Recyclers Association (NORA) is a trade association representing 325+ companies in the liquid recycling industry, most of them involved with used oil, antifreeze, oil filters & absorbents, parts cleaning, wastewater, and chemicals. They sponsor three annual events, although as of this writing the NORA website only lists dates for 2020 and no agendas (see last year’s agenda here).
Las Vegas, NV
The annual C&D World conference is hosted by the Construction & Demolition Recycling Association, which promotes the eco-friendly recycling of construction and demolition materials. Products such as recycling equipment, crushers, and recycling systems are showcased. Educational sessions cover systemic solutions to environmental challenges across recycling and waste management industries.
The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA), which we describe above, bills this as its premier technical conference, showcasing technologies and solutions to transform waste into a resource. As of this writing, there were still calls for proposals concerning PFA contamination2 in the areas of research, emerging regulations, landfill operations/response, and successful collaborations with wastewater treatment facilities. But wait—there’s more! Better than karaoke, there will be “crowd-sourced, problem-solving forums” wherein you can present your own personal solid waste problem in 15 minutes and garner the collective wisdom of all who came to hear you. Where do we sign up? As a matter of fact, right here.
* 2Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances
Although it sounds like the name of an oft-derided Disney film, The Environmental Show of the South is actually “the largest and most comprehensive environmental conference and tradeshow in the region,” at least according to its website. Alas, as of this writing, that website is distressingly void of any dates or program information for 2020, although leftover ad hype from 2019 promises “speakers from leading environmental agencies, industry partners, law firms, and service providers as they share up-to-the-minute information” to help participants “learn about compliance from regulators and the regulated community alike.” There’s an exhibit hall for meeting vendors and shopping their respective goods and services. And, of course, beaucoup opportunities to—you know: network.
NAHMMA NATIONAL CONFERENCE
Dates: Maybe April
The Big Kahuna among hazmat-handling organizations, the North American Hazardous Waste Materials Management Association (NAHMMA) is a nonprofit, membership-based association of individuals, businesses, government officials, academics, and organizations—all dedicated to reducing pollution from households, small businesses, and other entities. They promote their national conference as “the foremost gathering of North America’s hazardous waste management industry,” and who’s gonna argue? Features & benefits include connecting with peers from faraway places, sharing knowledge and experiences, and learning the latest & greatest from some of the big names in the hazmat-handling orbit. Participants also “gain access to highly relevant training and education that can’t be found anywhere else.” Last year’s party was September in Denver. As of this writing, where & when remain a mystery. But we’ll let you know as soon as we find out— ‘cause we’ll be there.
A waste-management showcase for more than 50 years, WasteExpo 2020 is a presentation of Waste 360, an “information, event, commerce, and education provider” to the recycling community. They bill their event as “the premier educational forum for every sector of the solid waste, recycling, and organics industry” and their roster of educational presenters as “a veritable who’s who in the industry.” As to networking, it’s “the ultimate industry reunion” with “everyone who is someone in the waste, recycling, and organics” in attendance.” Expect to find 600 exhibitors among 14,000 attendees, and remember that what happens at Waste Expo stays at Waste Expo. Right?
This two-day event is sponsored by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, who haven’t quite gotten around to updating their website with any specifics as of this writing, except to say it will feature “over 100 classes on air and water permitting, oil and gas, industrial and solid waste management, compliance and enforcement, and remediation programs.” Registration opens this January.
May 18 thru 22
Fort Lauderdale, FL
The National Association of Environmental Professionals (NAEP) is an interdisciplinary organization founded 50+ years ago in response to the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, and other legislation that created demand for engineers, biologists, urban planners, geologists, and other specialists who had knowledge and experience about earth friendly practices. The NAEP Annual Conference is an opportunity for such folks to convene and learn about new projects and share their expertise. The show for 2020 will be in Fort Lauderdale with the venue yet unannounced.
NORA MIDYEAR MEETING
InterContinental Magnificent Mile
The National Oil Recyclers Association (NORA) is a trade association representing 325+ companies in the liquid recycling industry, most of them involved with used oil, antifreeze, oil filters & absorbents, parts cleaning, wastewater, and chemicals. They sponsor three annual events, although as of this writing the NORA website only lists dates for 2020 and no agendas. See last year’s agenda here.
Founded in 1954 with the modest moniker of “Campus Safety Association,” but puffing up into what’s nowadays known as Campus Safety, Health, and Environmental Management Association (CSHEMA), these folks claim to be “the only organization focused entirely on serving EHS1 professionals in higher education.” And we certainly believe them. Details about their annual five-day conference are conspicuous by their absence on a website that otherwise promises “multiple educational sessions and networking opportunities where you can advance your knowledge and understanding of those topics most pertinent to EHS in higher education.” As of this writing, organizers are still accepting session submissions for 45-minute educational sessions, and 4 to 8-hour professional seminars.
Dates: Probably August
Hosted by the National Association of Chemical Distributors, this annual conference and tradeshow provides training and education on issues important to folks in the chemical distribution biz: chemical distributors, manufacturers, warehouse companies, and other supporting enterprises. Per their website, emphases are on “important regulatory, operational, and management issues.” Typical topics include best practices for health, safety, and the environment; transportation, logistics, and security; along with everyone’s favorite: regulatory compliance. It was held in 2019 in August in Louisville, Kentucky. But as of this writing, we can find no information about 2020. Nothing. Nada. Zilch.
August 2 thru 5
Omni Frisco Hotel
The initials CUHMMC stand for the College and University Hazardous Material Management Conference. (Now you know.) And per their website, its main (if not sole) mission is to ensure that a conference is held every year to bring together “some of the best EHS leaders from colleges and universities across the country to discuss the unique health and safety challenges faced in the academic environment,” as well as solutions and best practices thereto. As of this writing, website info about the 2020 conference is difficult to unearth, except that you’ll wake up one morning in Omni, Texas. Yeeehaw!
The Alliance of Hazardous Materials Professionals (AHMP) Annual Convention targets environmental health, safety, and security professionals. The goal is to edify participants about the latest developments in hazmat management. No details yet. But the website promises a comprehensive technical program; workshops, awards recognition show; and exhibits of new products, services, and resources. There will also be “a full-scale emergency response scenario” and—of course—”the opportunity to network.” But as if being in freaking Omaha weren’t enough in and of itself—there’s also the promise of “exciting tours.”
FET ANNUAL CONFERENCE AND EXHIBITION
Dates: Probably October
The Federation of Environmental Technologists (FET) was founded in 1982 to assist industries, municipalities, organizations, and/or individuals interpret and comply with environmental regulations. Dedicated mostly to the Great Lakes Region, it boasts between six- and seven-hundred members. Its Annual Conference and Exhibition is held over a three‑day period in October. The first day offers a smorgasbord of professional development courses. The subsequent two days feature a plenary meeting followed by 30 or so breakout sessions. There are exhibitions during all three days. Unfortunately, as of this writing the FET website offers no particulars about the 2020 conference: neither the dates nor the agenda. So if you or one of your loved‑ones is an environmental technologist—bookmark this website for updates.
Dates: Probably October
The Solid Waste Association of North America (SWANA) promotes itself as the leading association in the field of solid waste management, serving industry professionals through technical conferences, certifications, publications, and technical training courses. The dates and deets about its 2020 WASTECON convocation have yet to be announced, although the 2019 affair is happening this month (October) and promises “to give you the tools, information, and space to create a personalized learning experience that draws on the creativity, critical thinking, problem solving, and communication skills of you and your team”—promotional copy that’s just begging for some solid waste management.
CLEAN GULF CONFERENCE & EXHIBITION
Dates: Probably October
Promoted as “the premier annual event for industry and government from North America and beyond,” the agenda typically includes planning, preparedness, and response issues for oil and hazardous materials spills. The aim is to bring together all parties responsible for prevention and response operations to build relationships and share best practices. Participants are typically drawn from among oil & gas energy producers, transportation providers, supply companies, manufacturers, associations, academia, government, and military. The 2019 event is happening this month (October), so you’re probably going to miss the Women in Emergency Management Happy Hour sponsored by the BHP, Chevron, and Shell oil companies in a remarkable display of corporate collaboration. Obviously, the time, place, and agenda for the 2020 conference & exhibition are still unknowns. (But what about the guys in emergency management?)
NORA ANNUAL CONFERENCE & TRADE SHOW
The National Oil Recyclers Association (NORA) is a trade association representing 325+ companies in the liquid recycling industry, most of them involved with used oil, antifreeze, oil filters & absorbents, parts cleaning, wastewater, and chemicals. Their annual conference is promoted as “the liquid recycling industry’s premier networking and education event.” Venue is yet to be announced.
FABTECH caters to manufacturers who use metal forming, fabricating, welding, and finishing technologies. More specifically, you can roam among a potpourri of technological esoterica such as 3D “additive” manufacturing, robotics, industrial automation, and more. And since all of these technologies produce waste byproducts that one way or another require solid waste management—we’ll be there. You can’t beat the price: it’s free to walk the floor if you register by the deadline, which is November 8 for 2019 and TBA for 2020. But here’s a buzzkill if ever there were one: the website stipulates that “intimidating, threatening, harassing, physically or verbally abusive, discriminatory, derogatory, or demeaning conduct by any participant is prohibited.” Now what’s with that?