Coalition for Responsible Waste Incineration

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CRWI: Meeting a Vital Need

More than a half a century ago, science and technology harnessed fire far beyond the imaginings of our early ancestors. A new use of fire - high temperature combustion - was designed to help meet modern civilization's need for an effective and safe way to manage our hazardous waste.

Today, throughout the world, high temperature combustion is used to reduce the volume and toxicity of hazardous waste. With responsible management, this technology is safe, effective, and reduces the amount of hazardous materials sent to landfills.

Despite being highly studied by technical experts, combustors that reach 2,100 degrees Fahrenheit and burn greater than 99.99 percent of the material fed to them are still poorly understood by the general public. At the same time, industries that operate combustors benefit from the ongoing research and training in this field, and government regulators require ready access to both academic and industrial developments in combustion. All interested parties need a way to share the current abundance of information on combustion. The Coalition for Responsible Waste Incineration (CRWI), founded in 1987, is designed to meet this need. CRWI provides information to people who want to better use and understand high temperature combustion technology.

Focused from the Very Start

In the late 1980s, as more and more people sought information on environmental issues of all kinds, incineration experts from Dow, 3M, Monsanto, and Kodak held initial discussions about the particular communication needs in their field. Their telephone conversations and subsequent meetings extended over several months, eventually including other combustion experts, and finally leading to the formation of a not-for-profit organization - the Coalition for Responsible Waste Incineration (CRWI).

CRWI's goals have been focused from the very start. CRWI exists to:

  • Reduce hazardous industrial waste;
  • Help member companies improve their combustion operations through sharing the scientific knowledge available in the field;
  • Facilitate combustion  research;
  • Cooperate with lawmakers and regulators to produce environmentally sound laws and regulations governing hazardous waste management; and
  • Educate and raise public consciousness about the importance of combustion.

Combustion is One Part of the Solution; There are Others

Members of CRWI recognize the value of high temperature combustion as part of the solution to the waste disposal challenge. Without high temperature combustion, many major industries that consumers rely on for household products, cars, and medicines could not operate today. However, CRWI members realize that combustion is only one step in a comprehensive waste management system.

The first step in a comprehensive waste management system is to find innovative ways to eliminate waste generation in the first place; using less hazardous materials in production operations wherever practicable; and turning would-be wastes into raw materials for use in either the same manufacturing process or in a totally different processes. The second step is source reduction and recycling. The third step for some waste is to reduce the volume and toxicity through high temperature combustion. The final step is disposal. Hopefully by the time, the volume and toxicity has been minimized.  

For the relatively small quantity of waste that cannot be eliminated from the production cycle in any other way, high temperature combustion is a tested and proven means of managing these materials. CRWI dedicates itself to providing accurate and timely information to make all judgements about high temperature combustion, better informed judgements.

Organization Structure

The goals and programs of CRWI are accomplished through its active membership. The success of the Coalition lies within the expertise and availability of its members' organizations. Committees are commissioned to address specific issues or to develop programs commissioned by the Board of Directors.

Board of Directors

Each Full Member company holds one seat on CRWI's governing body, the Board of Directors, and has one vote in establishing priorities and direction. Board members are elected by the member companies to a three-year term.

Executive Committee

The Chairman, Chairman-Elect and Secretary/Treasurer are elected by the Board to a one-year term.

Executive Director

The Executive Director coordinates the day-to-day administration of the Coalition.

CRWI Membership

CRWI's members represent a wide variety of industries and academic institutions operating throughout the world. Member businesses include Fortune 500 companies and commercial hazardous waste combustors. The Academic Membership is composed of top institutions with strong research programs in combustion technologies, including high temperature incineration.

Coalition membership is open to individuals, partnerships, businesses, and academic institutions promoting responsible combustion of industrial wastes as part of an overall waste management strategy and willing to subscribe to CRWI's Bylaws. Membership is available in five categories.

Full Membership

Open to individual, partnership, firm or corporation which generates and/or thermally treats hazardous waste.

Generator Membership

Open to individual, partnership, firm or corporation which generates but does not thermally treats hazardous waste.

Associate Membership

Open to any individual, partnership, firm, or corporation which provides equipment or services to the hazardous waste combustion industry not otherwise qualified to be a Full Member or a Generator Member.

Academic Membership

Open to any institution of higher education involved in combustion research.

Individual Life Time Membership

Open to any individual who is interested in promoting the responsible use of incineration as a waste management practice, has expertise in the field of hazardous waste incineration, has contributed significantly to the CRWI's work, and is not currently employed with a firm that is either a Full, Generator, or Associate Member.

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