Thinking about waste and garbage is not a pleasant activity – at least not for most. Pity, because a lot of good can be done when we put our minds to it. As a matter of fact, the benefits are far-reaching. It’s not just about protecting the environment, even though that’s to everybody’s advantage. Neither is it only about an altruistic sense of doing good and being responsible. Getting rid of waste the proper way is also about economic progress; society in general and individuals or businesses stand to gain some serious financial advantages by doing the right thing. Here’s everything you need to know about the proper disposal of waste – and what you can do.

What is waste?

It may seem like a silly questions – one to which the answer seems obvious – but when we take a closer look, it becomes clear that the definition of waste is really a matter of opinion. It’s no joke: what to one person is waste could very well be a valuable resource to another. In fact, there are certain companies which would be willing to pay to receive what you deem clutter. That’s where the whole concept of recycling and resource recovery fits in.

Reducing waste

The bigger you grow, the larger your pile of waste. It’s the price of success. But by taking a closer look at how exactly the waste is generated, how much of it there is, and what kind it is, you open yourself up to many profitable and honourable opportunities.

  • Resource recovery. Waste that still needs to be disposed of can be burned for thermo-energy.

  • Recycling. Materials can be used again, or moulded into a new resource.

Reducing landfills

The less waste there is, the fewer landfills there will be – it’s simply a fact that about 90% of non-recyclable waste gets deposited in landfills. Here’s the positive thing: by reducing our waste, we reduce landfills, increase property prices, make nature more beautiful and sustainable, and attract visitors.

The economic advantages (for society as a whole as well as for the individual or business) should never be underestimated. Yes, a company may spend a little more treating its waste onsite or relying on a reputable waste collection service, but this is often off-set and made up with the transportation costs they save. Yes, it requires more work to sort and segregate, but this creates new jobs. Think of the resources that are saved – and thereby costs that are saved. Think of the lessening of pollution, which saves enormous money trying to clean up. And think of waste that is sold to those who see it as a resource. It’s a win-win for all concerned.

Image courtesy of digitalart/