Jim Hill is a Senior Specialist in the Sustainable Materials and Research Unit within CalRecycle, the agency that oversees California’s many recycling programs. For more than 25 years he has worked with the glass and plastic industries to expand use of recycled feedstocks, through market development and advanced technologies for materials processing and manufacturing. In recent years he managed projects related to end-of-life pathways for packaging, plastics and carpet, including optical sorting, life cycle assessment and Extended Producer Responsibility. He was lead author of a comprehensive report called Biobased and Degradable Plastics: Understanding New Packaging Materials and Their Management in California, which addresses the challenges for recycling in a rapidly changing materials universe. Jim works closely with CalRecycle’s new greenhouse-gas reduction grant program, which funds projects using previously landfilled materials to manufacture new products and packaging in the state.
Jim and his wife live in an environmentally designed community called Village Homes, with several four-legged creatures standing in for their two adult children who struck out on their own. The Hills’ 15 minutes of fame occurred years ago when the TV program Spaceship Earth flew a crew all the way from Tokyo to film the family surrounded by worms and compost. Unfortunately, Jim does not speak Japanese and so has no idea what the show was about.