The three Rs of corporate sustainability can help your company immensely, but only if you learn how to explore them.
Reduce, reuse, recycle – that’s the motto that has taken the world by storm, and sincerely, it’s really encouraging that the three Rs have started to gain more importance. Householders and entrepreneurs alike are thinking of incorporating them into their homes and companies. Today, we’ll only focus on the latter, as many questions about sustainable business practices have been raised lately. Will recycling save your organisation time and money? Definitely, but there’s much more to know about this measure that can decrease your environmental impact.
Even if waste is sometimes unavoidable, it’s crucial to take notice of actions that can at least reduce, reuse, or recycle it. Here you’ll find a helpful guide on the meaning of the three Rs, as well as how to make the most of them to push your business forward – and some not-to-be-neglected benefits.
What do the three Rs mean?
Reducing waste refers to minimising waste and consuming fewer materials in the manufacturing process. It goes without saying that this will increase your savings, but how could you reduce waste in a world that consumes so much? By adopting the correct waste management strategy, of course, and this is more than achievable if you’re serious about your actions – trust us.
You can start by conducting a thorough analysis of your resources’ cradle-to-grave life cycle. This means that you’ll learn more about the composition of the manufacturing materials, as well as ways to use more of the existing resources instead of continuously ordering new ones from your suppliers. Once you gain a clearer picture of this process, you’ll be able to organise the production process so that the focus will be on waste reduction. You’re also likely to minimise rejected batches and use protective enclosures and wrappings more wisely.
Here’re a few ideas on how to make your business more waste-reduction-centred:
- avoid plastic cutlery – opt for biodegradable options instead
- address employee waste adequately and encourage good practices
- consider providing reusable or biodegradable cups, plates, and mugs
- train employees on waste reduction
- incorporate a composting system for food scraps
The second R in the hierarchy is often perceived as the most challenging to explore, as finding products and materials that could be reused is sort of a burden for business owners. No worries – you’re closer to this than you think. Some aspects of directing your attention toward, for example, include the transport packaging and the scrap metal from the manufacturing process. You can use reusable transport packaging across the entire cycle – transportation, manufacturing, and shipping. In the same manner, recycled scrap metal is used as raw material for a variety of products, including home furnishings (chairs, lamps, tables) and packaging (food packaging from recycled aluminium).
Reusing is also an excellent method to cope with limited resources and means and implicitly avoid the extra cost of single-use products. And if you truly no longer need some products, we recommend donating them. Suppose it’s about surplus building materials. In this case, you can donate them to help fund the construction of Habitat homes. There’re many methods to achieve your reusing goals – the only thing that counts is your initiative.
The first two Rs in the hierarchy are indeed the happiest options, but if any of them isn’t reachable, you can ultimately recycle waste. Recycling implies dividing the items in question into their base raw materials and using them to manufacture new items. In essence, it’s not that hard, but you need to consider several aspects before getting started. The most important things to take note of are the type of material chosen to be recycled and where you recycle it. Be mindful that there are balers and compactors for each kind of waste, so you have to put the products intended to be recycled into the right place. There’s a wide range of balers and compactors in Stockholm for every company’s waste volume and type of waste, as well as for each specific need that might require a unique approach.
Business benefits of recycling
Recycling can reduce your organisation’s ecological footprint, as a vast amount of materials will have a repurposed use and thus no longer pollute the air and soil. But there are also some particular business advantages you may want to consider – they might be that boost of motivation you need to become more green-oriented.
It saves waste and energy costs
Recycling is the go-to option to reduce waste that goes to landfill. Creating items from recycled materials demands much less energy than buying new raw materials every time you start manufacturing. We know it might be hard to believe, but here’re some energy-saving facts that will make you rethink your waste management plan:
- Producing paper from pulped recycled paper requires 40 percent less energy than creating it from virgin wood fibres.
- Creating new steel from old involves 70 percent less energy than producing it from scratch. As for aluminium, the percentage is even higher – if you choose to make new aluminium from old, you’re likely to save up to 95 percent energy.
- You could power a modern low-energy LED light bulb for more than four hours if you recycle a single glass bottle.
It clears the way for more job opportunities
Surprisingly or not, more and more individuals are interested in working for a company that makes use of sustainable practices and products. Gen Zers especially attach great importance to this aspect, according to Fortune, which suggests that this generation is more likely than never to reject employers who have a negative impact on the environment. But this is far from involving only your company. If more organisations took recycling seriously, there would also be more employment opportunities in the recycling industry. This is also an excellent chance for the local economy to flourish, so when taking the recycling route, you help an entire community, not only your company.
The three Rs can give your company the push it needs to operate more effectively. So, would you step into a greener future?