Petaluma, Calif., May 23, 2011 – Advanced Flexible Materials (AFM) and Trex Company kicked off the new Heatsheets® Blankets to Boards recycling program at the Greater Washington Sports Alliance’s SunTrust National Marathon on March 26. This was the first race to participate in the new program, which allows events of any size to recycle and repurpose their Heatsheets® thermal-reflective finish line blankets at Trex collection facilities across the country for transformation into durable and beautiful wood-alternative decking and railing products.
“The Blankets to Boards program allowed us to easily recycle our Heatsheets®, reduce our event’s waste and improve our environmental impact while still providing the finish line blankets that runners need, especially on a cold day,” said Daniella Levy, event manager for the Greater Washington Sports Alliance and finish line director for the SunTrust National Marathon.
With temperatures dipping into the low 30s during the marathon, the Greater Washington Sports Alliance provided 12,000 Heatsheets® to runners. Approximately 2,000 – or 16 percent – were returned for recycling, with many runners wearing their Heatsheets® home for protection from the cold and keeping them as souvenirs. Those that were collected in bins donated by Trex were taken to a local Safeway store (SunTrust’s finish line food sponsor) to minimize transportation costs.
“We saw a great response from the runners, who appreciated the option to recycle their Heatsheets®, even if they preferred to hold on to the blankets for warmth,” said Wil Turner, director of business operations for AFM. “Collecting sixteen percent of all Heatsheets® on a cold day is a great starting point for our program.”
Launched in February, Blankets to Boards represents a major improvement in the Heatsheets® recycling process. AFM, which provides reflective insulation technologies for an extensive range of uses, allied with Trex to accept recyclable Heatsheets® directly into its supply chain, primarily through collection at local grocery and department stores. As the nation’s largest manufacturer of wood-alternative decking and railing products, Trex collects, salvages and repurposes plastic – along with wood scrap and sawdust – and turns it all into low-maintenance outdoor living products that stand up to the test of time.
“The Blankets to Boards program is a perfect example of how Trex’s nationwide collection locations may be effectively utilized to support the recycling of all post-consumer polyethylene film wastes,” said Dave Heglas, director of material resources for Trex. “Through our partnership with AFM, we have yet another opportunity to create a cleaner environment for our consumers and their communities with eco-friendly outdoor living products.”