"Shepard Hall" by Su & Soe via Creative Commons

Megacity Waste Management Dialogue: The NYC Roadmap for Waste as a Resource

April 25-26, 2016

The AIChE Institute for Sustainability and the Earth Engineering Center in affiliation with the Chemical Engineering Department at the City College of New York held a workshop on April 25-26, 2016 to focus on New York City waste management and valorization. This workshop symposium brought together industry, academia, government agencies and municipalities to establish best practices in utilizing municipal solid waste as a resource. The outcome of this transdisciplinary program will be a roadmap for NYC that can be adapted as a model for sustainable waste management in megacities spanning technology, social and policy aspects. Participation included representatives from DSNY, NY DEP, and the US EPA.

Workshop Chairs

  • Marco J. Castaldi, Chemical Engineering Department of City College of New York, Earth Engineering Center at City College of New York (EEC|CCNY) 
  • Demetra Tsiamis, Earth Engineering Center at City College of New York (EEC|CCNY)

Workshop Topics

  • Setting the Stage for Sustainable Waste Management: a global overview and update on the current status of sustainable waste practices around the world and the future of thermal conversion of waste.

  • Megacity Waste Management: experts discuss waste management practices currently deployed and those being explored by megacities in Europe and the US.

  • The Hierarchy in Practice: Waste Management Processes and Technologies: recycling, landfilling, and waste conversion technologies in the context of the waste generator.

  • Risk Assessment and Environmental Impact: experts discuss impact of different waste practices on human and environmental health and sustainability initiatives for waste conversion.

  • Social Implications and Public Opinion: public opinion on overall waste sustainability.

  • Research at the Forefront of Waste Conversion: the latest R&D from industry and academia.

  • Policy and Market Drivers for Sustainable Waste Management: the impact of policy and the market on the future of waste sustainability.

Featured Speakers

Jamie Bohan

Jamie is responsible for defining and implementing Republic Service’s sustainability and alternative technology strategy, which focuses on value creation through sustainability.  This includes market development, innovation and technology commercialization to extract and maximize the use of valuable materials in the waste stream. Prior to Republic Services, she worked for a Fortune 100, high growth, manufacturing company on business strategy and product development.  She led several start-up programs within the company creating numerous new product offerings.  Her...Read more

Joost Böggemann

Joost Böggemann is a Dutch national, who has been living in the US since May 2014. Joost has worked for Inashco since 2011. Trained as a merchant marine officer, Joost sailed as a mate and engineer. In 2000, he received an MBA from Nyenrode University. Mr. Böggemann is passionate about international sustainable projects. Joost spent 8 years working for Siemens constructing power-plants and as project manager of container cranes. Later on, he executed a landfill-gas project in China. Joost has also worked on various projects as an independent contractor.

Joost joined Inashco in its...Read more

Dale J. Carpenter

Mr. Carpenter is a graduate of Binghamton University, with a degree in Environmental Science and Geology.  Dale has worked in various capacities in the environmental arena, in both the public and private sectors for over 30 years.  For the past 26 years, Dale has been with the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Region 2 office located in New York City.  During the course of his 26 year tenure at the USEPA, Dale has served in a number of different positions within the Agency including the Superfund, RCRA subtitle C and RCRA subtitle D programs.  ...Read more

Marco Castaldi

Marco Castaldi was born in New York City and received his B.S. ChE (Magna cum Laude) from Manhattan College. His Ph.D. is in Chemical Engineering from UCLA and he has minors in Advanced Theoretical Physics and Astrophysics. Professor Castaldi has approximately 60 peer-reviewed research articles, 40 peer-reviewed conference papers, 3 book chapters and 11 patents in the fields of catalysis, combustion and gasification. Some of his research findings have been covered by The New York Times, The Observer, CNN, and other trade publications. Prior to his academic career Professor...Read more

Peter Chromec

Mr. Chromec is Senior Sales Director at Hitachi Zosen Inova Ltd., Zurich – Switzerland, responsible for the North American, Caribbean and Eastern European markets. Hitachi Zosen Inova is a leading Energy-from-Waste technology supplier with over 80 biological and over 500 thermal reference plants world-wide.

Before, Mr. Chromec was the CEO of Hitachi Zosen Inova USA. He has worked in process/sales in general since 1986 and specifically with the Energy-from-Waste sector since 1996.  He has an MSc in Process Engineering from ETH Zurich and a BAS in business administration...Read more

Craig M. Cookson

Craig Cookson is the Director of Sustainability and Recycling for the Plastics Division of the American Chemistry Council, a trade association representing the leading companies engaged in the business of chemistry. Craig is responsible for leading the Plastics Division’s strategic national initiatives to increase the recycling of plastics, advance opportunities for energy recovery, and promote awareness of plastics’ role in providing sustainable solutions to society’s greatest challenges.  

Before coming to ACC, Craig was the Vice President of Integrated...Read more

Casey Cullen

After studying Environmental Science at the University of Vermont with a focus on Ecological Design, Ms. Cullen earned her MS in Urban Sustainability at CCNY in 2014 with an engineering focus. Co-Founder of the NYC Living Building Challenge Collaborative, she has spent over 5 years working on sustainable infrastructure projects along the east coast.

As a  Living Building Challenge project manager, Casey gained in depth knowledge about the material manufacturing transparency process and end of life processes for construction materials. As a member of a Waste...Read more

Christian Felske

Christian received his Civil Engineering Diploma and his Ph.D. in Solid Waste Management from the University of Essen in Germany. Prior to moving to Canada, he was a project engineer with the AGR mbH in Essen, Germany from 1999 to 2003. During that time he was involved in the design and operation of several landfills, composting plants and anaerobic digestion/waste to energy facilities in the Ruhr Region in Germany. From 2003 to 2009 Christian worked as a Research Scientist in the Waste Management Technologies program at the Alberta Research Council during which he lead several landfill...Read more

Sarah Foster

Ms. Sarah Foster is a Principal and Founding Partner of the scientific consulting firm CPF Associates, Inc.  She has more than 25 years of consulting experience in the environmental health science field.  Her work focuses on developing strategies for and conducting health and environmental assessments of waste management technologies, industrial facilities and waste sites. She has managed or performed over 100 comprehensive risk assessment projects and other types of health and odor evaluation studies for waste-to-energy facilities, municipal solid waste and hazardous waste...Read more

Commissioner Kathryn Garcia

Appointed in March 2014 by Mayor Bill de Blasio, Commissioner Kathryn Garcia leads the nation’s largest municipal waste management agency and its 9,700 uniformed and civilian employees. Under her direction, they keep New York City healthy, safe and clean by collecting, recycling and disposing waste, cleaning streets and vacant lots, and clearing snow and ice. After her appointment as the Department’s 43rd commissioner, Garcia set an ambitious long-term goal for New York City: send zero waste to landfills by 2030. From promoting electronics and textile recycling to enhancing...Read more

Paul Gilman

Paul Gilman joined Covanta in 2008 as Covanta’s first Chief Sustainability Officer.  He is responsible for Covanta’s safety, health and environmental compliance programs, government relations, community outreach, and for sustainability initiatives.  Before joining Covanta, Mr. Gilman was the Director of the Oak Ridge Center for Advanced Studies at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  He has served as the Assistant Administrator for Research and Development and Science Advisor at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  Prior to...Read more

Stephen Goff

Steve Goff is Vice President of Research & Development for Covanta Energy, where he is responsible for leading the company’s efforts to develop and commercialize new technologies for recovering energy and value from waste. 

Mr. Goff joined Covanta in 2005 with the acquisition of American Ref-Fuel Company, where he had worked since the formation of the company in 1985, when he was with their original parent company, Air Products and Chemicals.  Mr. Goff has over 30 years of industrial experience in Energy from Waste and other environmental and high-temperature...Read more

Bettina Kamuk

Bettina Kamuk, chemical engineer from the Danish Technical University (1989), is Global Market Director and Head of Department, Waste to Energy, at Ramboll – a global consulting engineering company.

Bettina is a highly experienced WtE project manager and project director and has been responsible for WtE projects Worldwide most recently the new integrated waste management facility in Singapore planned to be established in 2021 with a yearly capacity of 2 mill tonnes of waste to energy recovery and more than 200,000 tonnes of bio-waste and recyclables for sorting.

In...Read more

Debra Kantner

Debra Kantner has over 5 years of experience in solid waste data analysis and research and is the Internal Research Program Manager for the Environmental Research and Education Foundation (EREF). EREF is a 501(c)3 non-profit research foundation whose mission is to fund and direct scientific research and educational initiatives for waste management practices to benefit industry participants and the communities they serve. Debra is responsible for the management and analysis for all of EREF’s internal data and research projects. She holds Bachelor of Science and Masters of Engineering...Read more

Samantha MacBride

Samantha teaches urban sustainability at Baruch College and works full time as a professional in urban waste governance in New York City.  She holds a doctorate in Environmental Sociology, a MPA in Environmental Policy from New York University, and a BA in Biology from Johns Hopkins University, and has nearly 20 years practical experience in waste management.  Her book, Recycling Reconsidered, is a critical but supportive examination of the history and current state of recycling in the United States.  Samantha’s current academic research concerns sustainable materials...Read more

Cole Rosengren

Cole Rosengren is a freelance reporter who specializes in solid waste and environmental issues. He first became interested in the subject while working on the sanitation crew for a large catering company and seeing the scale of waste generated at events throughout the city. From transfer stations in the South Bronx to budget hearings at City Hall to compost builds on Governors Island, he has since covered many sides of New York's waste world. His stories have included a five-part investigative series on the state of local waste management for City Limits and a four-part series on the...Read more

Mark P. Schwartz

Mark Schwartz has over 29 years of experience in operations, construction, engineering, personal development and resource recovery/power generation facilities development and operations.

From 2001 to 2006, he served as the Plant Manager for the award-winning, retrofitted McKay Bay Waste to Energy Plant in Tampa, Florida. This facility was commissioned in 2002 after a complete retrofit and had the distinction of being named Facility of the Year in 2003, by the Solid Waste Processing Division of the American Association of Mechanical Engineers. Waste Management also awarded the...Read more

Dr. Nickolas J. Themelis

Prof. Themelis obtained his B. Eng. and Ph.D. degrees from McGill University (Montreal, Canada). In the first part of his career he developed metallurgical processes for the extraction and refining of copper and other metals, including the Noranda Process that did away with the emission of sulphur to the atmosphere. Later, he was Vice President, Technology of Kennecott Corporation, the largest copper company in the world at that time. At Columbia University, he has been Chair of the School of Mines and, later, first Chair of the new Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering. He is...Read more

Demetra Tsiamis

Demetra Tsiamis is the Associate Director of the Earth Engineering Center at the City College of New York.  Ms. Tsiamis manages all applied research programs at EEC|CCNY sponsored by operating companies and industry consortia in the field of sustainable waste management and conversion.   Her expertise is in thermal conversion of waste with a focus on gasification and pyrolysis of non-recyclable plastics.  Ms. Tsiamis is the lead engineer on the Enerkem technical due diligence and has led several technical research programs on waste conversion for companies such as...Read more

Charles J. Vörösmarty

Dr. Vörösmarty's research centers on human-environment interactions. He has led several teams that have executed interdisciplinary studies using earth system models depicting the Northeastern U.S., developed and analyzed databases of reservoir construction worldwide and how they generate downstream coastal zone risks, and assessed global threats to human water security and aquatic biodiversity. In addition to his dedication to mentoring CUNY students, Dr. Vörösmarty routinely provides scientific guidance to a variety of U.S. and international water consortia. He is a founding member...Read more

Rosemarie D. Wesson

Dr. Rosemarie D. Wesson is the Associate Dean for Research and Professor of Chemical Engineering at The Grove School of Engineering at The City College of the City University of New York. Dr. Wesson’s professional experience includes Director and Program Director at the National Science Foundation in the Directorate for Engineering; faculty member in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Louisiana State University; and Senior Research Leader in the Corporate Materials Science Research and Development Lab of The Dow Chemical Company.

She is an invited contributing author...Read more

James Van Woert

Mr. Van Woert has over 20 years of experience in the solid waste, recycling and renewable energy fields in the areas of operations, employee safety, development, demonstration and commercial application.   More recently, he has applied these same skill sets for development of source separated organic food waste processing facilities.  These systems are designed to take common everyday solid waste and convert it into a renewable and alternative energy source.  He has been successful in securing and implementing long-term solid waste agreements with the City of New York...Read more


Proceedings of the Megacity Waste Management Dialogue: The NYC Roadmap for Waste as a Resource are now available: