- Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) and the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council (USZWBC) have announced a partnership to promote zero waste practices among businesses, according to a press statement.
- GBCI — which already provides businesses with credentials for LEED, WELL, PEER and other sustainability programs — will now be responsible for granting businesses Zero Waste Facility Certification and Zero Waste Business Associate programs.
- Businesses that divert more than 90% of their waste from landfill and incinerators will be considered successful in reaching zero waste. The certification is based on the definition of zero waste from the Zero Waste International Alliance (ZWIA).
While the circular economy becomes more and more prevalent for industries around the world, the concept of reaching zero waste has become an integral part of achieving this economy. As Andrew Morlet, CEO of The Ellen MacArthur Foundation, noted at the USCCF Sustainability Forum in May, "[The circular economy] represents a mind shift in the way in which companies view markets and operate. It requires a more systemic approach, cross-functional collaboration within companies ... In short, it represents a new way of thinking and working."
Big businesses like Google have announced plans to achieve zero waste through strategies like better equipment management and increased recycling. However for many businesses to operate in a way that will allow them to achieve zero waste, it will require assistance and guidance from the waste industry. The Eco-Cycle Solutions Hub is one resource that has been introduced by the industry, and other companies have taken approaches to drive zero waste for specific materials like organics or solar panels. Overall more efforts to educate businesses and supply resources will have a positive pay-off for the industry in years to come.