Craig Cookson

Senior Director of Recycling & Energy Recovery

Craig Cookson is the Senior Director of Recycling & Energy Recovery for the Plastics Division of the American Chemistry Council, a trade association representing the leading companies engaged in the business of chemisty. Criag 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, Criag was the Vice President of Integrated Business Strategies at 720 Strategies, where he designed and implemented strategic grassroots programs for corporate, association, and non-profit clients. Craig was also the Deputy Director of State-Federal Relations for Governor Mitt Romney. Craig advocated on behalf of Massachusetts' interests on the issues of energy, transportation, education, and local commerce. Craig holds a B.A. in Political Science from The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, and an MBA from Boston College in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts. Craig is a long-time New England Patriots and Boston Red Sox fan and currently lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife Elizabeth and their twin boys. 

Sus·tain·a·bil·i·ty 101

Monday, May 20th
1:00pm to 5:00pm

Sustainability…it’s a lengthy, six-syllable word that has only been around since the early 1970’s and can have many interpretations.  Since its introduction, the concept has gone from fringe to mainstream, yet the definition can still be “elusive” and “vague.” In this half-day course, experts from the industry will discuss what sustainability means for plastics, including exploring the principles of triple bottom line, goal setting, benchmarking, sustainability reporting, standards, alternative materials and emerging technologies that are helping us bridge the gap to reduce impacts on manufacturing and products throughout their life.  Whether you are new to the plastics industry, new to a sustainability role within your company, or a seasoned sustainability professional who’d like to brush up on leading sustainability trends, this course has something for everyone.

Presentations include: 

  • Introduction: Defining "sustainability" for the plastics industry - Kim Holmes, Plastics Industry Association
  • Trendy terms: Comparing and contrasting "sustainable materials management" and "circular economy" - Gail Tavill, representing AMERIPEN
  • The big picture of mechanical recycling: How it works and the status of curbside recycling in the U.S.. - Dylan de Thomas, The Recycling Partnership 
  • Beyond mechanical: Introducing chemical recycling and energy recovery technologies - Craig Cookson, American Chemistry Council
  • Alternate materials: An introduction to bioplastics - Patrick Krieger, Plastics Industry Association
  • Standards: From resin ID codes to circular economy to chain of custody for recycled content, there's a standard for nearly everything - Patrick Krieger, Plastics Industry Association
  • Summing it up: A look at the various tools for reporting sustainability progress and goals - Cristian Barcan, Vinyl Institute