What is zero waste?

Zero Waste is a numeric benchmark, a system, and a lifestyle. Our company helps businesses reach zero waste as a numeric benchmark- sending no waste to the landfill through streamlined purchasing, processes, and programs. However, Zero Waste is also understanding that everything and everyone on the planet is connected. This is why we also provide webinars, courses, and consultations on how responsible consumption of resources and waste management creates both environmentally sound and socially just communities.

How does zero waste intersect with sustainability?

Sustainability is often defined as balancing the needs of people, planet, and economic stability (i.e. profit). Zero waste directly impacts each of these pillars. Zero waste practices include refusing to consume products that harm people during the entire life-cycle of a product as well as refusing to engage with processes that harm the environment. Zero waste provides economic stability through cost-avoidance, efficient processes, and investment in green infrastructure.

How can our business implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?

The United Nations has created 17  Sustainable Development Goals for peace and prosperity for people and planet. These goals communicate the commitment that organizations have to create a better world. The SDGs are aspirational; yet, when combined with action-based solutions found in Project Drawdown, they provide an intersectional blueprint to help us create a better world.

Contact us to book a webinar on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and specifically Goal 12: Sustainable Consumption and Production. Learn what the SDGs are, how they are measured, and frameworks to better understand how to achieve them by 2030.

What is the difference between environmental justice and intersectional environmentalism?

Both environmental justice and intersection environmentalism speak to making sure all people have equal access to healthy environments.  From an environmental justice lens, that means people should have equal access to the decision-making process of creating environmental laws, regulations, and policies. It also means that those laws should be enforced to make sure that no community shall disproportionately be impacted by harmful environmental practices.

An intersectional environmentalism lens, however, notes the importance of recognizing how colonization, white supremacy, and racism have created institutions and practices that actively harm marginalized communities. It is by acknowledging these problems that we can then actively work to dismantle these institutions and practices to create healthy environments for all people. Intersectional environmentalism puts people first, understanding that by protecting people, we simultaneously can protect the planet.

Learn more in the Learning Vault: Intersectional Environmentalism Free Resources

Is zero waste even possible?

Simply put, yes. But it will take effort by all people to move beyond thinking solely of waste-to-landfill as the only benchmark of a successful zero waste program. It is vital that individuals, businesses, and communities actively work with intersectionality in mind- namely that we must work to protect both people and planet.

Why not support low-waste vs zero waste?

We admit, zero waste does have a very all-or-nothing vibe to it. But when we think of the planet we want to live in, is "a little trash" combined with "a little white supremacy" and a "dash of patriarchy" mixed in ok? Or, should we set the expectation and the goals of fighting waste, fighting white supremacy, and fighting patriarchy until there is none? We choose the second option. We do know that it will take work, effort, and time to get there, but we believe in setting our intentions firmly with a goal in mind.

How can I be zero waste at work?

First, identify your waste habits at work and determine if there are opportunities to minimize your own impact. Then, look for opportunities of influence both at the team level and the organizational level. Access the Learning Vault for a number of resources and free downloads specific to this question!

How do I start a Green Team at work?

Sometimes you just have to start one-- even if it's just a team of one! However, Access the Learning Vault. We have a mini-course available (coming soon!) that will help you navigate the steps to creating an active, engaging, and meaningful Green Team at work.

How does zero waste impact global warming?

Global warming refers to the long-term warming of the planet which is leading to a much larger range of detrimental environmental impacts called "climate change". According to the US EPA, these changes can be linked to the "manufacture, distribution, and use of products- as well as management of the resulting waste".

The adoption of zero waste policies, and more importantly, adopting an intersectional approach as found in Project Drawdown, can can help reverse global warming and mitigate climate change.

How can we incorporate social justice at work?

Everything Zero Waste believes that we must both eliminate the negative impacts of improper waste management/consumption but also actively do good. That good means acknowledging the injustices done to marginalized groups in our society. That good means renouncing white supremacy and the patriarchy. That good means actively working to make our workplace and community safe, vibrant, and healthy for all people. Please Access the Learning Vault for free curated resources dedicated to better understanding Intersectional Environmentalism.

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