Overview and Mission

Overview

PSI works to develop and promote legislation and voluntary initiatives whereby manufacturers are responsible for recycling or safely disposing of their products once consumers are done with them. This is a concept known as producer responsibility. When manufacturers are responsible for managing their products at end-of-life, they are often motivated to make environmentally beneficial design changes that render the products more sustainable throughout their lifecycle. This act of making products more sustainable—of ensuring that they have minimal impacts on health, safety, and the environment across their lifecycle—is what we call product stewardship. 
 
Founded in 2000, PSI takes a unique product stewardship approach to solving waste management problems by encouraging product design changes, mediating stakeholder dialogues, and advocating for producer responsibility, in which manufacturers fund and manage the recycling and/or safe disposal of their own products post-consumer use. PSI has developed more model producer responsibility bills and product stewardship programs than any other organization in the country, and has assisted in passing the greatest number of producer responsibility laws. Our work spans an ever-growing number of industry sectors, including electronics, batteries, paint, packaging, thermostats, lighting, pharmaceuticals, medical sharps, mattresses, pesticides, carpet, phone books, gas cylinders, radioactive devices, and tires.

At the core of PSI’s work is a collaborative approach that brings together both the public and private sectors to develop product stewardship solutions jointly. Forty-seven state environmental agencies, along with hundreds of local government members from coast-to-coast, are active members of PSI. We have also established partnerships with nearly 100 corporations, businesses, academic institutions, non-U.S. governments, and environmental organizations. We conduct research on critical waste management issues, facilitate meetings and technical workgroups between the public and private sectors, and forge multi-stakeholder agreements that often lead to actionable product stewardship policies and programs. We also conduct pilot projects and provide strategic advice to both government and industry.

No other organization in the U.S. is as active on such a wide array of product sectors as PSI. This experience gives PSI a unique ability to understand the similarities, differences, and nuances between product sectors, which proves invaluable when creating and implementing materials management solutions.

Mission

At PSI, we envision a society in which consumer product manufacturers take primary responsibility for the environmental, health, and economic impacts of their products all across their lifecycle—particularly at the end of a product’s intended usefulness. When manufacturers are required, by law, to design, manufacture, and manage their products in environmentally responsible ways, the result will be products that are less toxic and less hazardous. Additionally, local taxpayers and governments will be relieved of the financial and operational burdens of materials collection and management.

We strive to achieve the following financial, social, and environmental goals with every initiative that we undertake:

  • Minimize waste management costs, particularly for taxpayers and government agencies;
  • Create recycling and waste management jobs in safe, fair trade conditions; and
  • Reduce waste, increase product reuse, and boost recycling rates while minimizing greenhouse gas emissions, energy consumption, and the use of toxic chemicals.

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11/21/2016
Webinar | How Do Packaging EPR Programs Impact Cost of Goods and Product Design?