Waste and climate change
Waste and climate change is a topic often overlooked during discussions surrounding climate change such as the upcoming The 27th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP27). Although waste makes up a relatively small percentage of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions globally, every percent counts in a warming world. By omitting industries from these discussions, the reductions we can realistically make are limited. Just as our climate is changing, so should our waste management practices.
Though the relationship between waste and climate change was overlooked at COP26, there is hope for COP27. The 50 by 2050 initiative was recently announced. Egypt will be launching this global initiative with the goal of treating and recycling at least 50% of waste produced in Africa by 2050.
Even though waste and climate change were omitted from COP26 conversations, it is important to reflect on the what actions have been taken to meet the targets we set a year ago before we begin new conversations at COP27. Being held accountable and transparent regarding data, targets, and performance is not only the responsibility of key stakeholders and leaders, but also industries, companies and even individuals. Are we in the same place we were a year ago? What have you done in the past 12 months to reduce your waste and your impact on climate change?
#DontWasteTime with your waste and climate change
In preparation for COP27, we have reflected on our #DontWasteTime campaign that looked at waste and climate change during COP26 as well as what we have done to in the past year.
Waste management and the fight against climate change: Our fight against waste and climate change.
Regardless of the lack of clarity on waste and climate change, what was clear before and during COP26 was that global GHG emissions need to be reduced drastically. Responsible waste management practices can help to decrease the amount of waste that ends up decomposing in landfill sites, subsequently reducing the GHG emissions that result from this process. By diverting waste from landfill sites and promoting circularity, the associated scope 3 emissions can be reduced. Did you improve on any of your waste management practices in the past 12 months?
At Don’t Waste, we are aware of the relationship between waste and climate change. We actively monitor and communicate the environmental savings our clients are making through their responsible waste management practices. In the past year, we have assisted our clients in saving the equivalent of 85 314 251 m3 of CO2, 383 435 255 kWh of electricity, 537 243 trees, and 825 856 301 litres of water.
Are you fighting food waste or fuelling the climate crisis? We have been fighting food waste.
The link between food waste and climate change is often overlooked. When food waste decomposes anaerobically in landfill sites, it produces methane gas which is about 25 times more potent as a GHG than carbon dioxide. Luckily, there are a range of solutions for avoiding, reducing, and recycling food waste. Have you been diverting your food waste and reducing your GHG emissions this year?
In the past year we have assisted clients in achieving massive carbon savings through food waste recycling projects. Read more about one of our most recent successes.
Will technology be able to stop climate change? Our technology can help.
There is an abundance of technologies being proposed to aid in the fight against waste and climate change. Climate change technologies prove to be most effectively used in the carbon management process. Following the process of measuring and reporting, abatement and planning, and finally offsetting carbon emissions can make a valuable contribution towards mitigating climate change. Have you used any technologies in your efforts to reduce your carbon footprint?
Our data-driven approach aligns with the carbon management process and our technology provides the key. Contact us to find out about the improvements we have made to our technology in the past year.
An important starting point when looking at waste and climate change, is to quantify how much waste is contributing to your carbon footprint. Just as you cannot manage what you have not measured when it comes to waste, you cannot set reduction targets or measure performance on emissions you have not quantified. Once you have the figures, you can set targets, find solutions to recycle your waste, and improve your performance. Did you measure your carbon footprint this last year?
At Don’t Waste we have quantified our own carbon footprint and set reduction targets. We are excited to implement our chosen strategies to reach these targets. Watch this space!
Do you know what’s in your waste stream? Our clients do.
Once you have set targets for your waste and climate change metrics, it is time to find out what is in your waste stream so that you can find solutions. Breaking down waste to a granular level can not only improve environmental performance, but also aid in cost savings, new sources of revenue from recycling performance, as well as improved resource efficiency. Did you find out what was in your waste stream in the past year?
Don’t Waste has performed 115 audits on our clients waste streams in the past 12 months. Enquire now about when you can find out what is in your waste stream.
In order to mitigate the relationship between your waste and climate change, you need to ensure you are selecting the most environmentally friendly solution. Some landfill diversion “solutions” can be more carbon intensive than disposal in landfill. Understanding your waste means understanding what comes with diverting it from landfill. It is important to weigh up whether the “solution” is worth the larger carbon footprint and the expense to the environment. Have you found the least environmentally harmful solutions for your waste this year?
Our mission at Don’t Waste is to protect the environment. We are constantly looking for the most environmentally friendly solutions for our clients. We can consult you on which solution is the most environmentally friendly for your waste.
Is it achievable to get to Net Zero Waste? Our Net Zero AP has the answer.
When it comes to waste and climate change, Net Zero is often used as a target. However, Net Zero Waste is challenging to achieve. It requires an incremental, data-driven approach, but is also largely dependent on location and recycling market conditions.
At Don’t Waste, we now have our very own Net Zero Accredited Professional (and more to come!). We are equipped to guide you on your zero waste journey.