Four R’s of Preventing Waste – Other R’s

July 22nd, 2011

Today’s post is by Mark Davis; Vice President of Operations and CTO at SafeSourcing. Mark asks "As the Waste Reduction area grows what are the next R’s to be added into the group?"

This week we have spent some time discussing the Four R’s of waste education; Reduce, reuse, recycle and rebuy.  Focus on these four areas can help companies begin to take steps to help begin reducing waste and become greener organizations.

As more companies begin taking steps to improve their processes, new areas will continue to open up for ways to grow this mindset and make it standard practice everywhere.  Today’s final entry of the series will take a look some of the new R’s that are beginning to emerge in today’s marketplace.

Recover – This is defined as any operation that diverts a waste material from the waste stream and then  results in a certain product with a potential economic or ecological benefit. Recovery often focuses on material, energy or biological resources and generates income as well as reduces waste. Many companies such as Recover Waste Energy, Inc. (http://recoverwaste.com/) specialize in this process and are doing great things to manage organic waste.

Replenish – Replenishing natural resources such as planting new shrubs and trees are a big part of not only replacing those resources being used for other products but it helps to create habitats and remove excess carbon from the air.  As an organization this may not be something you can affect directly, but it is definitely an area where you can select vendors who actively practice this in the course of their business.

Rethink – This last “R” is probably the most important new R as we head into a greener future for our planet.  Rethinking how we do everything involves a change in practice and mindset that examines everything we do looking for opportunities to rethink waste; how it is created; how it can be reduced; what we can do with it; and how we can use it in order to continue making a greener world

The first step to beginning to affect change begins with knowing where you are and where you need to go. 

We at SafeSourcing hope you have enjoyed this week’s series and look forward to your comments  For more information on us or how we can help you on your company’s journey down any of these “R” paths, please contact a Customer Service Representative.

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