The ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ mantra has gained significant momentum over the last decade or so, not only amongst individuals but organizations as well. However, as we begin to adopt that mantra as the norm, we must also begin exploring how we can repower ‘reduce, reuse, recycle.’
With that notion in mind, a group now looking to minimize its contribution to landfills is the business community of the Las Vegas Valley, which is making determined efforts toward zero-landfill waste — or reducing the trash they contribute to landfills to as close to zero percent as possible.
Sound impossible? Businesses elsewhere in the country are doing it too, or coming close to 90 percent less waste, according to a recent Las Vegas Business Press article.
DuPont, for example, maker of Corian countertops, has had zero waste since last year, saving 81 million pounds of waste per year from ending up in landfills – the company grinds shipping pallets into animal bedding; it sells scrap Corian materials, which are then used to build roads; and cafeteria waste gets used as compost for landscaping at its facility.
Similarly, General Motors has made half of its factories waste free so far. Leftover sound insulation, for instance, doesn’t get pitched but is sold to garment makers for winter coats, and employees are asked to take home coffee grounds for yard compost.
Toyota is also working toward a goal of keeping all its waste out of landfills. Up to this point, nine of its 14 U.S. factories don’t contribute to the waste stream.
As you can see, it’s a combination of big and small methods that get this goal accomplished. Here at The Refinishing Touch, we applaud businesses that jump on board to save our planet with innovative ideas that also make good, sound business sense. We are a partner in this overall effort to keep landfills from getting overburdened — and have been since 1977 — helping government, universities and hospitality industries refinish, re-upholster, and remanufacture furniture assets as opposed to buying new.
And in the process of completing our environmentally-friendly furniture asset management services, we save our clients up to 80 percent in costs and 90 percent in carbon emissions. And like the efforts of our friends in Las Vegas — we are working to save the environment, one percent of waste at a time.