Why AI is an operational necessity in 2024

Since launching this report, AI has become an essential tool for the world’s waste management leaders.

In this year's edition, we take stock of AI's global growth over the last year, offer a new look at the industry-first tools using AI, and feature insight from some of the sector’s most influential voices.


Discover data from real recovery facilities, including:


+/- 10%

fluctuations in material purity – on a single PET line, in a single day.


£1.6 million

worth of valuable material lost to residue lines at one British PRF – every year.



of one MRF's residue stream was made up of valuable, easily recoverable material.

What you'll learn:

  • How to apply AI to individual waste streams, entire recovery facility operations, and group-level strategy.
  • How the cost and accuracy of AI-powered continuous monitoring compare to manual spot sampling. 
  • What real-world recovery facilities have learned from automated waste analysis.
  • What the industry's leading innovators think about the future of waste management AI, ESG reporting and more.

New for 2024: 

  • How AI integrations have made it possible to automate sorting, sampling and compliance reporting. 
  • Why the world's largest plant builders and machinery providers are already preparing for fully-automated facilities. 

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"The future is clear: to further increase recycling rates we need more insight and collaboration across the value chain. We have been looking to implement AI that can power fact-based and automated decision-making to provide our clients with a much more accurate overview of their waste composition, and ultimately maximise their ROI."

Edmund Tenfelde

CEO at Bollegraaf

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"[AI vision units] will be part of the standard hardware for recovery facilities. I cannot see an MRF that won't be using it in the future."

Professor Edward Kosior

CEO at Nextek

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"This is a year of realisation - many are now coming to terms with [the data] they're missing."

Stuart Hayward-Higham

Chief Technical Development & Innovation Officer at SUEZ UK

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"AI is going to change our position in the circular economy. With the detail AI gives us, the waste industry can start to... play a much bigger role in how materials are produced, used, captured and regulated."

Simone Aplin

Technical Director at Anthesis

Let’s connect

We believe in the power of combined expertise. Whether you want to create a connected facility or build AI into your sorting machinery or software, we’d love to help.