Creating a comprehensive recycling plan for a city like New York City is no easy feat. Good thing waste management company Action Environmental Services is so committed to sustainability.
There’s no question there’s a stigma attached to people who work in waste management. Although judged for their jobs as trash collectors, employees in this field are incredibly important to the fabric of each and every community.
Action Environmental Services is committed to getting this message out.
“These men and women are providing a very vital service to the community,” shared Ron Bergamini, CEO of the leading waste management company in the Northeast United States. “We collected two million tons of waste last year through our two primary hauling companies. People used to throw the New York Department of Street Sweepers parades for their services. Somewhere along the line, that got lost.”
Founded in 1999 by John Glauda, Action Environmental Services began as a two-truck operation. Bergamini and his business partner Mike DiBella bought a majority interest of the company ten years ago with the backing of private equity.
“That’s when the growth really took off,” Bergamini shared. “Not only did we have the capital, but by purchasing the hauling assets of Waste Management, the company tripled in size overnight.”
The entire leadership team has its roots in New York City or the surrounding area. This, it turns out, is instrumental to Action Environmental Services’ success.
“This is a business where you need to be on the ground,” he said. “I think it’s one of the reasons the public companies may not be as successful in the city: NYC is a very unique city with unique needs, and they just don’t know it like we do.”
The company’s continuing growth is tied to its commitment to increase recycling in one of the biggest cities in the world. Through its compliance efforts and dedication to sustainability, Action Environmental Services is turning the Northeast into a recycler’s paradise, particularly with respect to paper and cardboard.
Waste management in the U.S. is a highly regulated industry, and Action Environmental Services takes compliance seriously. The leaders of the company sit on boards and committees with policy makers related to safety, the pros and cons of franchising opportunities in the city, and the waste management industry in general to make sure that the industry is being held accountable for its actions.
The company supports policy for trucks to produce less emissions, and was integral in the passing of an emissions regulation for New York City. Bergamini and his team also supported “Slow Down to Get Around,” a safety initiative for the waste management industry to take its speed and driving in the tight streets of New York into consideration.
And you wouldn’t think technology would be key to waste management’s success, but for Action’s recycling programs, it’s a necessity. That’s why their recycling facility in the Bronx is such a big deal.
“We’re incredibly proud of it. There’s nothing like it in the private sector in the city,” Bergamini said.
The company bought the property in 2010 and had it up and running by 2013. The main goal of the facility is to sort out fiber—namely cardboard and paper. Not high-tech enough for you? Bring in the lasers.
This innovation helps Action Environmental Services extract 400-plus tons of higher-quality recyclables a day. Without this process, valuable fiber would otherwise end up in landfills. It’s then sent to China to be repurposed into new products.
This facility received recognition at the Global Green Sustainable Design 14th Annual Awards for increasing recycling of valuable materials citywide. Action Environmental Services hopes it will help lead NYC into the future of recycling.
But Action Environmental is much more than a recycling facility: it’s also a leader in composting. The organization has been composting for over a decade, and performs the majority of the city’s commercial composting needs.
These statistics alone should be enough to convince the casual citizen of the importance of waste management professionals in his or her community.
“It’s not an easy job at any level,” Bergamini said. “These people are true professionals.”
Action Environmental Services is interested in continuing its growth trajectory through relevant acquisitions. The company is looking into becoming a processor and has property identified for this role.
Technology will also continue to play a big part in its journey: trucks in the city already have the basic version of on-board computing, through Route Ware, while trucks at IWS have the complete package. It measures trucks’ idling time, emissions, gas usage, takes pictures, and uploads the data in real time.
“We’re expecting to have the technology on all trucks in the near future,” said Bergamini. “It’s where the industry is going, so we’ll lead the way here in NYC.”
Action Environmental Group, Inc. is the parent company of Action Carting Environmental Services, Inc. and Interstate Waste Services, Inc. From collection and recycling, to composting organic material and disposal, we provide a comprehensive array of environmentally responsible service offerings. Action is New York City's most progressive and innovative provider of non-hazardous waste management services, serving a diverse range of industrial and commercial customers, including –
- Hospitals and Medical facilities
- Building contractors
- Retailers, malls, and plazas
- Universities, colleges, and schools
- Investment banks
- Other types of businesses
Our company started with two trucks in 1999, and grew organically over the years to about 30 vehicles, and then expanded via several small acquisitions. In 2007, we purchased the solid waste and recycling assets from the nation`s largest hauler, Waste Management. This doubled the size of our company, creating efficiencies and opportunities to invest further in recycling projects, such as our state-of-the-art Material Recovery Facility (MRF) in the Bronx.
From the first and cost-effective ways – never losing sight of our unwavering commitment to respecting the environment. And we are about making certain Interstate Waste Services (IWS) also serves a diverse group of customers from the west side of the Hudson River, including Northern New Jersey, Rockland and Orange County of New York. Learn more about IWS here.
Action Environmental Services HQ
300 Frank W Burr Boulevard, Suite 39
Teaneck, NJ 07666
Email [email protected]