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BIR’s 2020 Annual Report: Quickly adapting to the challenge of new realities


The report is launched during the opening address delivered by BIR President Tom Bird at the start of the 2021 online World Recycling Convention & Exhibition aimed at keeping the BIR membership and the wider recycling community informed during this prolonged period of business and economic uncertainty.

This lively, eye-catching publication features reports from BIR’s President, Director General and Treasurer, and provides data and expert insights from BIR’s eight commodity divisions and committees. The Annual Report also reflects the key achievements and concerns of the organization’s cross-commodity bodies – the International Environment Council and the International Trade Council – as well as activity reports from the special committees dealing with organizational matters within BIR.

“Whereas 2019 was a year of relative stability, 2020 was the complete opposite,” said BIR President Tom Bird. “COVID-19 set challenges for our industry – and for society in general – which we had never previously encountered. As ever, the recycling industry demonstrated its renowned ability to adapt to ever-changing circumstances and to carry on with its environmentally and economically crucial work. BIR as an organization also succeeded in adapting remarkably quickly to the changes brought about by the pandemic, including the launch of online Conventions and finding new ways to communicate with our national association members.”

“On the one hand,” Mr Bird added, “this Annual Report underlines the many difficulties that arose during 2020. On the other, it reflects the robustness of our industry and its many triumphs over adversity during a tumultuous year for us all.”

The 2020 Annual Report also confirms that BIR’s membership has remained stable, uniting over 700 members in 70 countries.