How to overcome objections to recycling in bigger business

Some large businesses can be more bureaucratic than governments. That can make it difficult to implement new ways of doing things, such as comprehensive recycling programs.

On the plus side, when a really big company embraces a course of positive action, it can achieve more good than a hundred or a thousand smaller businesses.

The question is: how can one person influence the direction of a large organisation? Here are some ideas.

  1. Understand your company’s environmental policy. Sometimes policies adopted at board level don’t get implemented lower down in the organisation. If you find any areas where recycling performance in your department falls short of policy see if you can identify any solutions, and raise them with your manager.
  2. Take a close look at your work area and see what could be recycled. Look beyond the usual suspects of paper, glass and plastic. Depending on your company’s activities, anything from lighting waste, old computers, and batteries through to scrap metals and a range of hazardous industrial wastes are fair game for recycling. Once you’ve identified potential materials for recycling seek out robust solutions. Talk to the experts in recycling unusual waste streams, or arrange a meeting between your company’s decisions makers and the specialist recycling companies that can develop solutions for your problematic waste.
  3. If the objections to recycling are at your departmental level, take your ideas further up the ladder. Many large companies provide channels through which all employees can share ideas with senior management. More enlightened companies even reward good suggestions.
  4. Highlight the real cost of waste. Everything that a business ends up sending to landfill represents a waste of money, materials and energy. A lot of ‘waste’ is actually a reusable resource. Study the basics of industrial ecology, and see if you can identify any cases where your company’s waste is another company’s raw material.
  5. Identify potential savings. Large companies generate some types of waste in such quantities that it can become commercially viable to sell it. Even if that’s not the case, recycling costs are often less than landfill expenses.
  6. Find strength in numbers. If you have a good recycling idea see if you can get your colleagues to support you. Then take it to the boss.
  7. Show how simple it is. One of the easiest recycling schemes to get up and running in the workplace is battery recycling. As everyone in the business becomes familiar with recycling more types of waste it will be easier to develop a culture of recycling and to introduce additional recycling programs in the future.

Make recycling easy

Simplicity of recycling doesn’t end with batteries. Ecocycle is Australia’s most experienced and only fully licensed recycler of mercury-containing waste, including fluorescent lighting, electronic waste, batteries and industrial and mining waste. Our value lies in providing simple, convenient recycling solutions for these difficult and hazardous waste types.

To find out how we can help large companies achieve an improvement in recycling performance, call us on 1300 32 62 92 or fill out the form below and one of our experts will be happy to recommend solutions.


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