An Eye Toward the Future

Mercer Group International
Written by Mark Golombek

For twenty years, Mercer Group International has been serving the needs of the New Jersey area with its state-of-the-art recycling capabilities that focus mainly on construction and demolition debris. Its goal is to keep as much material out of landfills as possible. It also operates a transfer station and recycles paper and cardboard products.
Its facilities will accommodate concrete, wood, cardboard, stumps, treated lumber, stone, mulch and tree parts. Mercer Group International is considered to be one of the leading recycling companies in New Jersey and is accredited by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

Mercer Group International is a privately-held, family-run business based in Trenton, New Jersey, Tom Mazza is the current chief executive officer and president. His father Mario started Mercer Wrecking, which was a construction and demolition business in operation from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s in the New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania markets.

Mercer Wrecking quickly dominated the industry, becoming one of the most sought after demolition contractors. It was hired to demolish the Sears building in Philadelphia, and the scrap metal that was a byproduct of this work prompted a new aspect of the business.

From there, the company continued its growth with the purchase of F&W Waste and C&R Waste. The company’s expansion was slowed somewhat by the influx of other companies entering the demolition business but it then changed its focus to recycling, particulary of waste from construction and demolition (C&D).

From 2003 to 2005, Mercer Group made a series of moves toward this new emphasis on C&D that started with the sale of its Chesapeake facility. In 2005, it began running a transfer station in Trenton New Jersey and expanded the selection of accepted materials to include plastics, paper and cardboard. Other acquisitions and mergers followed.

Companies like Mercer are in demand more than ever before, and there are many factors that contribute to this. Going green through C&D recycling is a part of the new wave of environmentally conscious endeavours which brings more attention to this industry.

Plastics, paper and cardboard, concrete and wood are the materials that Mercer recycles. There are many challenges inherent in plastics recycling. When compared to the recycling of glass or metallic materials, it ita far more complex undertaking. Each type of plastic is identifiable via a code. The sorting of plastics can be very costly, and on top of that, the caps are usually made from materials that are not recyclable. Only about three to five percent of all plastic is recycled. The rest will take about two hundred to four hundred years to decompose in landfills.

“Paper recycling is the process of taking used paper products and creating new paper products from them. There are three types of paper material that can be used to produce recycled paper products: mill broke, pre-consumer and post-consumer. At our facility, we sort a post consumer mixed paper product which is sold to paper mills,” says the company.

Needless to say, the efforts of recycling companies such as Mercer create a positive outlook for the future of our planet. While some may scoff at efforts to recycle, it is helping in so many immeasurable ways.

“A plant takes a minimum of fifteen to twenty years to grow into a tree, but take less than ten minutes to cut down, and one average one tree can yield about seven hundred paper grocery bags, which will be consumed in less than an hour by a supermarket!” according to the company.

Concrete recycling produces clean agggregates for use in road bases and fill. It can also be put in place as a foundation on which to lay underground utilities. Landscapers also have a plethora of applications for these recycled materials.

If you have ever seen a large container on the front lawn of a house or commercial site, chances are that it was rented from a company like Mercer. These are useful to people making renovations, additions or cleaning out a garage. Mercer’s container service is available in ten to forty cubic yard capacities.

Commercial services are also available through Mercer Group International. Recycling and waste haulers are readily available to handle commercial waste. “Our programs run differently because we take into consideration the type and amount of the materials that you generate,” says Mercer.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) projects are all about reducing your environmental footprint and saving money, and Mercer Group’s work fits in perfectly. Recycling leads to a healthier environment, and is in the best interests of any company to strive to increase the designation from LEED silver to LEED platinum.

“As a member of the U.S. Green Building Council and having LEED accredited staff, Mercer Group International can help you earn waste recycling points for the construction waste management of your LEED project. Mercer Group International is the green recycling solution you’ve been looking for,” says the company. Mercer’s LEED accredited staff which can answer all questions pertaining to LEED certifications and steer any project in the right direction.

Mercer’s material recovery facility accepts debris and other materials from a job site. The result is a host of new products and less material ending up in a landfill. The population of the world is growing at a rapid pace. It is hard to believe that there was a time when few people recognized the value of recycling and how it could have a positive effect on the environment.

Through necessity we have adapted and changed course. Companies used to throw garbage and toxic chemicals into waterways and landfill without truly appreciating the consequences of those actions. Companies like Mercer Group International have shown us that through a little innovation and knowhow, we can stem the tide of environmental disaster and look to a brighter future on this planet of ours.



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