It all started two years ago.
I was walking back to my car after work and I could not help but notice that there was an overflowing trash bin and a half-filled recycling bin. I thought if we have recycling at the complex where our office is, why are we not recycling? I went back into our office and talked to our CEO about purchasing a recycling bin for us to use. We started recycling that week.
That was the first step of many on our journey to becoming a zero-waste company in two years. After putting the recycling infrastructure in place, I started educating co-workers on what can and cannot be recycled. I was living in Boulder at the time and used Eco-Cycle’s EcoLeader program, which trained me well on how to recycle. The practices I learned through Eco-Cycle are also used in the basis of Denver’s recycling, so I took what I learned and held regular trainings to educate my co-workers. Old habits are hard to change, but with continuous education, I was able to get our staff on board.
From there, signing up for a composting service seemed like the next logical step. Again, this had to be coupled with training and education. Slowly but surely, we made progress. Throughout the journey, I tracked how much waste we sent to landfills and how much we were able to divert. This was a crucial part to track our zero waste journey. Two years after we started recycling, we hit the magic number; 0 waste.
Zero Waste is a set of principles focused on waste prevention that encourages the redesign of resource life cycles so that all products are reused. The goal is for no trash to be sent to landfills, incinerators, or the ocean and instead have it recycled or composted.
While it seems so simple, going from no recycling and composting to zero waste in 2 years was no easy feat.
This effort is a part of AdCellerant Gives; an initiative by AdCellerant, to give back to the community and the planet by reducing their footprint and helping out in their community. These efforts include a zero-waste office environment, weekly volunteer hours and donations to help feed the Denver homeless, as well as supporting our local community through various community service projects.
“Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has!” –Margaret Mead