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Reuse, reduce, recycle, renew: The journey to zero waste to landfill [Pt1]

By Bertie Lourens 22nd January 2019 Social Responsibility

It’s no doubt that zero waste to landfill (ZWTL) has become a corporate imperative in recent years. This article explains why your company should aim for ZWTL.

Once perceived as an unscalable and unreachable business strategy, zero waste to landfill (ZWTL) is quickly becoming a corporate imperative. It’s the idea that waste is not an option – it’s a resource waiting to happen. According to the Zero Waste Alliance, zero waste is a “residual product” - packed with potential value for any business committed to closing their waste cycle loop.


Here’s why your company should aim for Zero Waste To Landfill:

1.Big cost savings

Rerouting your rubbish will save you the costs (and regulatory red tape) of waste management and disposal. Better yet - reselling your recyclables will pump fresh revenue into your income streams.

2. Strengthens your brand

Customers want to see that companies are serious about sustainability. Zero waste means you can market and brand your business as being “Green”, in turn, improving your brand loyalty and reputation.

3. Faster material flow

When zero waste is your business goal, you can pull all activities of your supply chain together, under one strategy and vision. This kind of systematic approach saves you time, money, and admin, and also paves the road to sustainability.

4. Gives you competitive edge

By lowering your costs, optimising your material flows and building your green reputation, your company stands to stay ahead and outrun the others.


There you have it. We’re sure you are excited to start building your own ZWTL brand. But now the next step. How? Where do you start this process? Glad you asked. Here’s what we suggest:


1. Audit your waste streams

Start by assessing your company’s current waste habits and policies. Do you have recycling bins for every office? Are there ways you can reduce or eliminate your hazardous waste streams? Understand your particular business, and start thinking about new, creative ways to reduce and reuse your waste.

2. Set your zero waste goals

After an honest audit, establish your company goals to build a zero waste to landfill business. Clearly communicate these goals to your employees, and engage them in the collaborative process. Get them excited to join the ZWTL journey.

3. Build a team of ZWTL champions

Choose individuals that are passionate and informed about environmental sustainability, who can champion its benefits to colleagues and customers. Allow them to monitor your company’s progress and to implement their own ideas around better recycling and reduced waste solutions.

Want to know more? In Part 2 of the journey, we’ll discuss more practical steps that you can apply to reach your ZWTL status. We’ll talk about its benefits in greater detail, and help you, step by step, to make a transition your business will never regret. Watch this space!

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Bertie Lourens

Author Bertie Lourens

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