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postheadericon Sustainable Resource Planning: The Importance of Waste Management Facts and Figures

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To make waste management goals attainable, companies need to use their own waste management facts and figures to encourage change, as these point to the inefficiencies in our own society.

Organizations should be very clear when they determine waste management facts and figures, to make sure that they adopt a plan that will be tenable, as well as sustainable. Very often, an organization's management will only determine that recycling is a societal requirement and will not realize that with proper waste management, significant savings can be accomplished.

Waste management facts generally show us that as a society we are grossly inefficient. With the current waste disposal practices, about 95% of the total volume of wastes go to the landfilla, thereby being ineffective.

A typical landfill is a grossly inefficient way of dealing with our mountains of waste. We simply bury the solid waste that will not degrade, in some cases, for decades. In addition to the fact that the landfill is an eyesore, it is responsible for the generation of liquid leachate, methane and carbon dioxide and our landfills are very contributor to our greenhouse gas problems.

In some cases, certain jurisdictions gather energy from waste, where waste is burned in a furnace to generate steam, or electricity. While this may seem to be an efficient way of dealing with certain categories of waste, pollutants are a byproduct, both on a localized basis and from a general, environmental perspective.

Global warming will result from methane that's just allowed to leak to the air from a landfill. However, a little-known waste management fact is that there are over 500 landfill-gas-to-energy projects in the United States, estimated to produce enough power through renewable energy to light 1.6 million homes.

If a company makes an effort to gather waste management facts and to determine the correct size and scale of the problem, it will find that a systematic waste management program could save, by some estimates as much as 1% of annual turnover. Moreover, these are long-term savings, rather than short-sighted.

Remember that customers and other stakeholders are increasingly critical and insist upon measures of sustainability prior to allocating the business to an organization. It follows that a company that is willing to go out of its way to show that it is sustainable, by publishing its waste management facts, can expect an exponential increase in reputation.

Waste management could extend all throughout an organization's lifecycle, which could even include the supply chain. Every company should take a leaf out of Wal-Mart's book and insist that its suppliers become equally as sustainable as the purchasing company.

Sustainability Resource Planning (SRP) offers solutions for carbon emissions & refrigerant gas tracking, energy efficiency, sustainable asset management, and water conservation. Increased regulations to reduce greenhouse gases (GHGs) will cause significant challenges and will impact business operations, brand management, fiscal accountability, and risk mitigation strategies. Learn more at

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