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AI-Based Bin Tagging Platform for Regulatory Compliance

Award Information
Agency: Environmental Protection Agency
Branch: N/A
Contract: 68HERC23C0025
Agency Tracking Number: B234B-0028
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: 4B
Solicitation Number: 68HERC22R0180
Solicitation Year: 2023
Award Year: 2023
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-12-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-05-31
Small Business Information
1966 Tice Valley Blvd, 105
Walnut Creek, CA 94595-2203
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Nikhil Balachandran
 (925) 289-9345
Business Contact
 Nikhil Balachandran
Title: CEO
Phone: (925) 289-9345
Research Institution

Zabble's mission is to help organizations achieve zero waste by delivering real-time actionable insights using an AI-enabled SaaS platform. California’s Short-Lived Climate Pollutant Reduction Law (SB 1383) is the largest change to it's recycling and waste industry since the 1980s. The law establishes new organic waste collection and recycling programs, food recovery programs, and requirements for jurisdictions to procure recycled organic products, contamination monitoring audits and outreach. All of these activities are a coordinated effort to reduce the amount of organic waste that is sent to landfills by 75 percent by 2025, an action that will greatly reduce the impact of climate change. During Phase I of the EPA SBIR Solicitation 68HERC22C0022, Zabble implemented a novel feature to automatically detect and classify contaminants from an image using an AI model and notify users when certain contaminants are found. The overall goal of the present Phase I proposal is to develop Zabble Zero™ Mobile Tagging™ into an efficient tool for contamination monitoring audits to help jurisdictions comply with SB1383’s requirements. Zabble will develop a fully functional, self-serve, efficient, low-cost solution for jurisdictions, haulers and consultants in California by updating the AI model and user workflows. Zabble’s solution has the potential to reduce the time it takes to collect, aggregate and report data by 20x, compared to current methods of using pen and paper, while influencing behavior change via real-time communication and targeted outreach. Institutions and non-profits such as Stanford, The Recycling Partnership and UCSF use the Zabble Zero platform to track their progress to zero waste. In 2021, Zabble was recognized, by Startus Insights, as one of the top 5 AI startups advancing the circular economy. In 2022, so far, our clients have measured more than 15,000 tons of materials and prevented more than 100 tons from going to landfills. This Phase I project is a great opportunity to bring an innovative technology to help municipalities, and thereby the EPA, realize their environmental goals and educate residents and businesses about the benefits of improving the recycling system.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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