Friday, November 15, 2013

The Value of Workplace Recycling is About More than just Money

In addition to monetary considerations associated with recycling the business community has a critical role to play helping disseminating the practice with other businesses and consumers. Recycling not only reduces environmental footprints, experienced organizations can also share their expertise and encourage others to follow their lead.

Companies are coming to terms with growing resource scarcity and recycling is an essential part of sustainability strategies. A growing number of environmentally conscious consumers are demanding that companies not only engage in more ecologically responsible practices but they want them to share their values with consumers. Recycling in the workplace can save energy, reduce emissions and minimize contributions to landfills, as well as conserve natural resources and generate jobs.

A UNEP report suggests investing $108 million in the waste sector annually could increase recycling threefold by 2050 and reduce landfill contents by more than 85 percent. In Brazil, recycling already makes more than $2 billion a year while avoiding 10 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.

Recycling rates in the US are about half of states like Austria and Germany. However US recycling rates are getting better. The rate of industry recycling of aluminum has shown clear evidence of improvement in the US. According to a report in Environmental Leader, that rate climbed to 67 percent in 2012 continuing a decade long upward trend. Recycling aluminum can make a big difference. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recycling aluminum cans saves 95 percent of the energy needed to make aluminum from bauxite ore.

EPA statistics indicate that as much as 45 percent of the 250 million tons of municipal waste generated in 2011 was from commercial and institutional locations such as business and government offices, retail establishments, schools and hospitals.

According to the study “What Workers Want in 2012,″ 83 percent of consumers think companies should try to accomplish their business goals while still trying to improve society and the environment. 

Recycling in the workplace is a popular phenomenon for both consumers and workers. According to a National Geographic survey, more than 80 percent of US workers polled said they believe it is important to work for a company or organization that makes the environment a top priority. A Net Impact Study shows this also contributes to work satisfaction.

© 2013, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

Related Articles
America Recycles Day
Businesses Take the Recycling at Work Pledge!
Businesses Innovative and Diverse Recycling Efforts
Webinar - There is Money in the Trash: Savings Through an Integrated Approach to Waste Management
Simple Recycling Tips for Offices and Workplaces
Video - Recycling: Let Garbage Live Again
RecycleMania Tournament 2014: Student Recycling and Waste Reduction Competition
Recycling is a Business Imperative
Recycling In America: More Than Just A Feel Good Experience
Recycling Can Create Millions of Jobs
The 3 Stages of a Recycling Loop
Best Practices for Sustainable Businesses

No comments: