If you could take a simple step to help strengthen your company’s:

  • sustainability initiatives;
  • contribution to preserving water quality and wildlife;
  • compliance with federal and state regulations and avoidance of fines;
  • safety/housekeeping program;
  • employees’ well-being;
  • operational efficiency;
  • financial bottom line; and
  • reputation in the community…

…would you take it?

That step is Operation Clean Sweep (OCS), a product stewardship program of the American Chemistry Council’s Plastics Division and Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS).

The campaign’s goal is: to help every plastic resin handling operation implement good housekeeping and pellet, flake, and powder containment practices to work towards achieving zero pellet, flake, and powder loss. OCS is being conducted in thousands of plants around the world, all adding to the effort to protect the environment.

Pellet, flake and powder loss has many negative impacts on individual companies, on the plastics industry as a whole and on the environment.

Operation Clean Sweep Program Manual

  • Slips and falls are a major cause of plastics industry accidents.
  • Accidents mean lost work time, higher worker compensation costs and lower employee morale.
  • Violations of storm water regulations in states like California can result in civil penalties of up to $3,000 per incident (e.g., Cal. Code. Regs. title 23 § 13385). Any person discharging unauthorized waste in violation of CWC § 13264, could be found guilty of a misdemeanor and may be fined up to $1,000 a day.
  • Spilled pellets, flakes, and powder can eventually end up in our waterways and the ocean. Whether they’re handled in an Iowa plant or a seaside facility, this material can be transported to storm drains that lead to rivers and then to the ocean — resulting in litter and posing a threat to marine life such as sea birds, turtles, and fish.

When the industry handles pellets, flakes, and powder as responsibly as possible:

  • Plastic pellets, flakes, and powder are kept out of the natural environment, including waterways and oceans;
  • Companies enhance their reputations as good stewards of the environment — an increasingly important factor for attracting the investment community and high-quality employees; and
  • More material stays a valuable product rather than becoming waste, improving efficiency.

OCS’ ultimate goal is to help keep plastic pellets, flakes, and powder out of the environment, but these efforts can also help improve relations with stakeholder groups and community organizations that expect the industry to minimize its environmental footprint.

The industry needs every processor’s help to get positive results.

Please contact us with any input or questions: ACC: 202-249-6626 | PLASTICS: 202-974-5200

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Litter is not an issue of type of debris, but one of personal responsibility. We ALL share in the responsibility to prevent litter – stopping debris before it reaches our stormwater drains where it can drift to our oceans. Protect our oceans and we protect ourselves.