As a hazardous waste generator, do you truly understand what is happening to your waste streams when they leave your facility?
If you’re like a lot of business people I know, you have colleagues who cringe at the term “sustainability.” You bring up the concept and they immediately envision anti-capitalist tree-huggers. Sustainability is so much more, but it can sometimes be hard to explain.
Making the journey from the current take-make-dispose linear economy to a circular economy can be rough. It is good business, but it requires a change in both business processes and mindset. Many businesses are already moving in that direction and--although the concept is relatively new--some are have found tremendous success.
The circular economy, at its most basic, refers to moving from our traditional take-make-dispose linear economy, to one in which materials are continuously repurposed until they are finally recycled. It’s a closed loop, hence the circle.
Overflowing landfills and islands of garbage floating in the Pacific. Overreliance on non-renewable energy sources.
For hazardous waste generators, there are lots of options for disposal of hazardous waste streams…….recycling, fuel blending or simply burying in a landfill are just a few of the options available. When assessing options, many generators simply default to their preferred vendor on whatever is presented to them, without understanding all of their options……….many times to their detriment.
“Necessity is the Mother of Invention.” As the popular English proverb is roughly interpreted, difficult times inspire ingenious solutions.
As a leader of your organization, your compensation is directly tied to your ability to consistently deliver quarterly and annual profits for your stakeholders. You also have a responsibility to make decisions that ensure the long-term growth and survival of your organization.
How do you get undressed every day? Do you remove the used articles of clothing, ball them up, and throw them in the garbage bin? Probably not. That wouldn’t make nearly as much economic sense as laundering and reusing them. Most would agree that throwing out good clothing after one use because it was dirty and purchasing new clothes each time you needed to get dressed is an absurd concept.
A recent scholarly article in The Harvard Business Review entitled The Comprehensive Business Case for Sustainability discusses the differences between traditional business models and sustainable business models.