ACMA’s First Composites Sustainability Today Event Showcases Groundbreaking Composites Sustainability Initiatives

Arlington, VA – June 13, 2024 – The American Composites Manufacturers Association (ACMA) debuted their “Composites Sustainability Today” event in Denver, Colorado, from June 4-6. This three-day event brought together industry leaders, innovators, and sustainability advocates to explore the latest advancements and best practices in composites sustainability.

Tuesday, June 4: Vartega Tour and Recycling Insights

The event commenced with an exclusive tour of Vartega’s composites recycling facility. Vartega, a leader in carbon fiber recycling, provided attendees with an in-depth look at their state-of-the-art processes designed to recycle carbon fiber, a material where currently only 2% is recycled. Participants toured various stations in the facility and learned about Vartega’s commitment to safety, quality, and sustainability. Vartega gifted attendees tire levers made from recycled carbon fiber as an example of Vartega’s sustainable approach.

Wednesday, June 5: Policy and Industry Insights

Day two of the event began with opening remarks from John C. McAuliff, Senior Policy Advisor for the Office of Clean Energy Innovation & Implementation at the White House. McAuliff highlighted the administration’s sustainability goals and the integral role of U.S.-manufactured advanced materials in achieving these objectives, emphasizing the potential contributions of ACMA and its member companies to these national goals.

The spotlight was then on ACMA’s upcoming LCA+EPD Generator program, set to launch in December, segueing to insightful tutorials and critical aspects of life-cycle assessments (LCAs), environmental product declarations (EPDs), and product category rules (PCRs), highlighting their significance and preparation steps.

ACMA’s President & CEO Cindy Squires Esq. provided a comprehensive session on ACMA’s vision for sustainability within the composites industry, detailing current programs, future projects, goals, and regulatory topics.

ACMA member companies were also given the opportunity to showcase their sustainability efforts, including a presentation by Paul Salach, Product Leader at Owens Corning, on their 100% recycled content products. The day continued with sessions emphasizing the importance of effective communication of climate benefits and the avoidance of greenwashing by Heather Palmer,  Environmental/ESG Partner at Sidley. Key discussions also covered the use of recycled composites and bio-based materials, EPA’s labeling program, and EPD standards led by John Schweitzer, ACMA’s Vice President of Environmental, Health & Safety and Sustainability.

Dr. Hota GangaRao, Wadsworth Professor and Director of Constructed Facilities Center, presented a comparative evaluation and critical insights of the climate impacts of steel versus composites in structural components, concluding with an engaging panel session.

Thursday, June 6: NREL Tour and Innovations in Wind Energy

The event concluded with an enlightening visit to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). Attendees toured NREL’s facilities, which focus on the production, recycling, and repurposing of wind and water composite turbine blades. NREL showcased their efforts to develop turbine blades designed for recyclability, emphasizing their commitment to circularity and the use of bio-based materials. The tour highlighted NREL’s use of automation in grinding, cutting, trimming, and sanding processes, underscoring their innovative approach to sustainability.

Looking Ahead: A Sustainable Future for Composites

The Composites Sustainability Today event provided a comprehensive platform for sharing knowledge, showcasing innovations, and fostering collaborations aimed at advancing sustainability in the composites industry. Throughout the event, ACMA members and attendees actively engaged in discussions, provided feedback on key sustainability topics, and learned about cutting-edge advancements and practical applications in the field of composites.

“We are thrilled with the success of this year’s Composites Sustainability Today event,” said Squires. “The knowledge shared and the innovations showcased here will undoubtedly drive the composites industry towards a more sustainable future.”

ACMA would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to our Thought Leader sponsors, McCLARIN Composites and Owens Corning, and contributor, 3A Composites, whose generous support was instrumental in making this event a success. They also extend their gratitude to all speakers, participants, and tour hosts for their participation.

For more information on ACMA’s sustainability initiatives and upcoming events, please visit or contact John Schweitzer at

Media Contact:

Eliana White 

Director, Marketing & Communications, ACMA 


About ACMA

The American Composites Manufacturers Association (ACMA) represents the complete North American supply chain for the fiber reinforced polymer (“FRP”) composites industry. We are manufacturers, material and equipment suppliers, distributors, academia and end users, dedicated to growing the composites market. We serve our members and the industry by promoting the competitive advantage and versatility of composite materials. ACMA offers composites industry educational resources through our Education Hub, CAMX, conferences, webinars, and Certified Composites Technician (CCT®) program. We develop standards and specifications that drive preference for the use of composites in place of traditional materials. We lead advocacy efforts via legislative and regulatory channels to achieve a more viable composites industry. Together, we make composites the sustainable material of preference. Visit for information on membership and initiatives.