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Solid waste laws, recycling, food waste and more among topics at sold-out Sustainability Conference in Gaylord

Sustainability: “Avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance.”

Michigan Sustainability Conference: “A sold-out gathering of community and business leaders enjoying the fall splendor of Northern Michigan while brainstorming ways to strengthen sustainability in pursuit of a purer Michigan.”

Some 230 Michiganders gathered in late October at the EGLE-sponsored Michigan Sustainability Conference in Gaylord to explore sustainable tools and best practices ranging from recycling and technology to food waste prevention and renewable energy during the 7th annual conference.

EGLE Director Phil Roos speaking at Sustainability Conference in October 2023 in Gaylord.

EGLE Director Phil Roos speaking at Sustainability Conference in October 2023 in Gaylord. 


This year, a suite of topics on the three-day agenda was of special interest to county officials from across the state who came in part to learn how Michigan’s new solid waste law revisions will enhance recycling and waste reduction efforts.

“It was heartening to see the interest in both the new solid waste strategies and the growing excitement over all topics sustainability that was evident throughout the conference,” said Liz Browne, director of EGLE’s Materials Management Division.

In addition to networking and the spectacular fall color show afforded conference-goers, workshops and presentations included a wide range of topics ranging from:

  • How sustainability is critical to meeting Michigan’s MI Healthy Climate Plan goals of statewide carbon neutrality by 2050.
  • Navigating the complexities of new funding opportunities and policy changes that impact sustainability goals.
  • How to accelerate circular economies through partnerships like NextCycle Michigan.
  • Pathways to industrial decarbonization through innovation and change.

Information and news about sustainability-related issues is available through several of our more than 70 mailing lists that are free to subscribe to. To keep informed about next year’s Michigan Sustainability Conference, please subscribe to the “Training and Outreach Events” topic.