2020 has been a highly unusual year for all of us. Businesses, organizations of all kinds and sizes and associations have had to adapt to new protocols and procedures, and your used oil management associations have been no exception. We have continued to work on initiatives that benefit our Members – for example, the EHC One-Window project, and gather better information, such as the Antifreeze study and Plastic Supply chain study. We have also endeavoured to level the playing field for all Members, so that all companies benefiting from our recycling programs contribute their fair share with, for example, the OEM category review and by examining our compliance review and audit process. (Please click on the links above to access each of the related articles.)
Market conditions, collector activity and processing capacity have changed rapidly in the first three quarters of 2020. Indeed, used oil collection hit an all time low in April of this year; however, collection volumes began to recover over the summer and approached 2019 levels by August. The used oil market is expected to remain volatile and uncertain, but the consistent and reliable return incentives paid to collectors and funded through your EHCs encourage collectors to maintain baseline service levels. Used oil filters, antifreeze, and plastic oil, antifreeze and DEF container collection has been less affected.
With the cancellation of community events, trade shows, and most summer activities, our public outreach programs also had to adapt. Instead of meeting face to face with generators, collectors, processors and other members of the public, our outreach and education programs had to take a more distanced approach. These adaptations relied on some digital tactics, including virtual events, video conferences, geo-targeted digital media, and the like, as well as a return to low-tech engagement such as talking on the phone instead of visiting in person.
Sales and collections to date may be down compared to 2019; however, your programs continue to operate efficiently and effectively to ensure that the end-of-life phase of your products is properly managed and our environment is protected.