Despite the opportunities for recycling and numerous ways to dispose of waste effectively, many companies are still sending most of their waste to landfill. Dave Thomas explores ways to encourage change.
Landfill remains the main method of getting rid of waste. Considering our worldwide waste problem, more needs to be done to recycle and reuse our waste.
Businesses can have a huge impact on the future of waste disposals. Yet, it’s taking much longer than expected for all businesses to start taking recycling and waste management more seriously.
For a lot of business owners, with everything else going on, this is just not a priority, but it should be. How can we push businesses into taking more responsibility for waste management and caring more about their impact on the environment? Here are some things that just might do the trick.
Higher rewards for efficient waste management
Businesses that are setting a good example should receive higher rewards, prompting other businesses to follow. Many businesses just don’t have enough incentives to manage their waste in a more sustainable way, because they see it as a burden rather than an opportunity.
Penalties for improper waste disposal
As well as rewarding businesses that are managing their waste properly, businesses that break the rules or fail to make any attempt to recycle their waste should be penalised. If not managing their waste properly was detrimental to their business more companies would make it a priority.
Case studies published to raise awareness
For some businesses, all that is needed is a little inspiration. Seeing how well other businesses manage waste, and discovering that it’s a simpler process than they assumed can encourage more companies to jump on board.
Promoting the benefits
The benefits of efficient waste disposal need to be made clearer and better promoted. Businesses don’t think of the benefits, they only see the potential challenges and costs that recycling and managing waste properly brings.
If business owners saw the benefits to their company, they would realise they outweigh the costs.
More emphasis on corporate responsibility
More emphasis needs to be put on corporate responsibility, and why businesses need to be more mindful of their impact on the environment. The business world needs to be held more accountable for its detrimental impact on the environment. Business owners need to be shown firsthand what their waste does to our world.
Some of these suggestions may not yet be feasible, but some just might make a difference, even if it is small. Waste management legislation varies hugely from country to country.
In the US, the legislation encourages individual states to create comprehensive plans to manage non-hazardous waste, and at the moment the western region has the highest number of landfills.
The rules and regulations vary significantly around the world, but one thing is clear, we all need to do our bit. We need to find ways to reduce the amount of waste that automatically goes to landfill, and targeting the business world is one way to go about this.
David Thomas is a recycling specialist and is passionate about helping to save our planet. He regularly writes for environmental websites and is a writer for kedel.co.uk, a company that sells recycled plastics.
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