VARTEGA Wins Competitive Grant to Expand Its
Recycling Program and Help Grow Colorado’s Economy
State-sponsored grants divert waste from landfills and create new green-sector jobs
Golden, CO (April 30, 2019) – Vartega, Inc (Vartega) has been awarded a $25,000 grant in recognition of plans to expand its recycling program and create new green-sector jobs. The funding is part of the Recycling Resources Economic Opportunity (RREO) competitive grant program, which is administered by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).
Colorado has made strides when it comes to diverting trash from landfills by reducing, reusing and recycling waste, but there is still plenty of room for improvement. According to CDPHE, in 2007 the state diverted only about 7 percent of the nearly 10 million tons of household and commercial trash generated that year. Seven years later, those numbers have improved as 11 percent of roughly 9 million tons of waste was diverted from landfills in 2014. Yet Colorado still lags well behind the national average of 35 percent for waste diversion.
The RREO grant program gives for-profit, nonprofit, and local entities the infusion of funds they need to expand access to recycling and help Colorado surpass the national average. However, grantees must demonstrate more than a plan for better managing waste. Each must also show how it will help build local economies and create permanent jobs for Coloradans who are ready to get to work.
“The funds we receive through this RREO grant will help us do more to keep high value advanced materials like thermoset and thermoplastic composites out of landfills,” says Andrew Maxey, Vartega CEO. “As an RREO grant recipient, Vartega will be using the funds to invest in shredding equipment to enable the reuse of thermoplastic composite scrap and waste generated from industries such as additive manufacturing/3D printing, aerospace, drone production, and sporting goods.”
Vartega is building on more than $11.5 million in RREO grant funds that have gone to making a positive impact on the quality of life in towns, cities and regions across Colorado. The shredding equipment enabled through this grant will also be used for the AMIDE Alliance, a collaboration between public and private partners dedicated to closing the gap in advanced materials development for additive manufacturing. The AMIDE Alliance was founded in 2018 through an initiative funded by another state program, the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade’s Advanced Industries Collaborative Infrastructure Grant.
“We are pleased to recognize Vartega for its dedication and commitment to reducing the amount of waste sent to Colorado landfills and creating new jobs in the local economy,” said Eric Heyboer, RREO Grant Program administrator at CDPHE. “Through our RREO grants, we incentivize partnerships that are a win-win for Colorado’s economy and the environment and this project exemplifies that mission,” said Eric Heyboer, RREO Grant Program administrator at CDPHE.
A recent study commissioned by CDPHE titled Economic Study of Recycling in Colorado revealed that the state’s recycling industry sustains more than 85,000 jobs and accounts for approximately 5 percent of Colorado’s overall economic output. This generates nearly $1.3 billion per year in state and local tax revenue.
About Vartega, Inc
Vartega is a recycler of advanced materials – specifically strong and lightweight carbon fiber. We are cultivating a sustainable future through the development of enabling technologies designed to preserve resources and achieve systematic sustainability. Our modular patent-pending carbon fiber recycling process scales easily to address a gap in the composites supply chain. Vartega’s carbon fiber and specialty thermoplastics are used in sporting goods, additive manufacturing, oil & gas, and vehicle lightweighting.
About the RREO Grant Program
The Recycling Resources Economic Opportunity Act (HB 07-1288) created the RREO Grant Program with the intent to fund implementation projects that promote economic development through the productive management of recyclable materials that would otherwise be treated as discards. Projects that meet this goal are designed to implement recycling, composting, anaerobic digestion, source reduction, and beneficial use/reuse for a wide variety of materials. Funds are awarded to businesses, local governments, nonprofit groups, and schools and universities throughout Colorado. The grant program is under the authority of Colorado’s Pollution Prevention Advisory Board.