Here is a 2012 blog post from when we attended the 2degrees webinar “Beyond the Bin: From recycling to zero waste.” We think that the advice is worth sharing a second time around! Check out the tips and add your own suggestions in the comments below:
1. Choose “single stream” – by allowing employees to sort recyclable material into a single receptacle, you can expect to see an increase in recycling of up to 50%. Make it easy for employees, and they’re more likely to participate!
2. When crafting a zero-landfill strategy, don’t just focus on recycling. Be sure to include options like: closed loop solutions (reuse), composting, and supply chain management. Remaining materials that can’t be recycled or reused can be converted to energy through conversion technologies: waste to energy, plasma gasification, and anaerobic digestion.
3. When designing new facilities, be sure to think about waste conveyance design. Make sure you consider the following:
- Internal areas for collection, storage, and separation of materials
- External space for multiple container sizes and service areas
- Design for ease of use
4. To improve recycling in existing buildings, review the following items to make sure you’ve covered your bases:
- Bin size
- Bin type
- Tenant education, key component to gain buy-in maybe have a kick-off meeting and continuous reminders with metrics and goals
- Space constraints
- Service area
If your organization wants to get a better handle on its waste, a great first step is conducting a waste audit. We’ve developed a toolkit (webinar, guidance, and templates) all around How to Conduct a Waste Audit. If you find that your team doesn’t have the gumption to sort through all that trash, contact us to arrange a waste audit done by sustainability professionals!