The simplest way to define the “zero-waste” policy is the matter of keeping all garbage or used materials out of the landfill. Everything is either reused or recycled in order to keep from adding a single ounce of garbage to the landfill. And from where I live, less than 10 miles from our local landfill, I admit that this is something that should be considered for the benefit of our earth for many reasons. So, there is the question of whether businesses need to invest efforts in these processes because it will help them financially in the long run.
So many businesses are starting to market the idea of becoming a zero-waste community and everything that they will do to help advance the process. This could be everything from including recycled materials for their packaging, grocery stores recycling their plastic bags, and other simple procedures like that. These are growing over time, with large corporations presenting the idea that they are working to help retain life in the world.
So, where is the potential? Recyclable and reusable packaging is possible in a business, though there is not always the potential for this in personal life. Sometimes the ability to manage the separation of recyclables from trash is not easy, and there is not always the time to keep up with this. There are others who live in areas that do not offer recycling yet, so it takes a great deal additional effort to drive recyclables to a location that collects them.
Both of these are valuable to businesses and individuals alike, but could it ever be 100% of our disposal process? Any time in the near future? Would we be able to start moving into the modern age of no waste? Would the landfills be able to start shrinking? Would our garbage companies have to change their process? And when would we be able to reach this status?
It is hopeful that “Made from 100% Recycled Material” is a possibility for almost all products in the future. This would take a great deal of change for many packaging and shipping companies as well, especially with the amount of cardboard, paper, and plastic materials that they waste on a regular basis.
So, when do we think “zero-waste” may be of greater potential to our nation and world? There are scientists who predict that there are some businesses capable of having this certification within the next few years, while others predict that it will still be several decades before we receive a significant amount of “zero-waste” effort from corporations in order to make a significant difference for the environment.