Recycling is one of the best ways to have a positive impact on our planet and those around you. According to the EPA:
“There are significant environmental and economic benefits associated with recycling. Recycling helps create jobs, can be more cost effective than trash collection, reduces the need for new landfills, saves energy, supplies valuable raw materials to industry, and adds significantly to the U.S. economy.”
This is especially true in public places like parks, corporate offices, convention centers, airports, and shopping centers. Though the benefits of recycling are well known, business recycling programs still lag well behind residential recycling.
As the importance of (and expectation for) recycling continues to grow, now is the time to get involved in starting or improving the recycling program at your site or place of business.
Steps to Starting a Recycling Program
Prior to starting your recycling program, it’s important that you develop a strategy on how you plan on achieving your goals. The following steps are a great guideline on how to build an effective and sustainable recycling program:
- Find a volunteer to serve as the recycling coordinator. Electing an individual who is passionate about recycling will help to create an efficient program and will make the planning and implementation of the next steps much easier.
- Determine the scope of your program. You’ll need to consider what types of materials your site will be recycling and how much of each material. This will also help in determining the type and amount of recycling bins needed.
- Evaluate and research options. The options you have will be dependent on your location. There is a wealth of information online and the recommended method is to conduct an online search based on your location. Waste collection services are available everywhere and easy to find through an online search. The resources you’ll need to maintain the program (i.e.: recycling bins) are also easily available online.
- Implement the program and educate all involved. The final step is to procure all of the necessary resources and to educate anyone that will be participating in the program. Be sure to think strategically about the best locations for your bins. Near trash receptacles and in highly trafficked areas are great places for recyclers. Clearly marking each bin with the appropriate recyclable is also recommended.