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Waste management has become a serious issue in the world ever since the rise of industrialization and the population boom that started in the 20th century. With over 7 billion people across the globe producing waste within their homes, companies and communities, a need arises to educate people and promote waste management in order to battle the effects of global warming and decrease the harmful effect that waste production has on the environment. Assess the amount of waste you produce Start your waste management plan by writing down the amount of waste your household, company or project produces on a monthly basis. You can categorize waste into different types such as scraps, human waste, water waste, energy waste and natural materials. Additionally, remember to note the trash produced by excavation and building crews, if you are running a renovation project. Every waste management situation will have different parameters, so make sure to observe all crucial elements in waste production. When managing waste in your company, you will have to account for the amount of waste that every employee produces and that will include water, energy and material waste. After you’ve assessed the amount of produced waste, you can divide it into recyclables, reusable materials and refuse. Recyclable waste is usually consisted of flyers, clothes, bottles, plastic and paper, among other. Refuse materials are mainly consisted of kitchen and industrial waste in the form of old cleaning supplies, cords, bulbs and electrical trash, and is best reduced to a minimum by limiting consumption and opting for more durable, long-lasting items, such as switching from regular lighting to LED lighting, etc. Lastly, reusable “waste” can be anything you can make use of for a prolonged period of time, such as partially printed paper, delivery boxes, jars and paper bags. Set up an action plan Once you are finished with categorizing and have assessed the amount of waste, you’ll need a concrete plan of action for each type of waste. Note that waste disposal is not cheap and it’s always better to prevent waste accumulation and production than to deal with excessive amounts of it every month. Along with being better for your budget, prevention is eco-friendly as you are reducing the amount of greenhouse gas emission and waste production. You can limit the amount of resources you use that later become refuse and use only the reusable and recyclable materials. Instead of constantly changing traditional light bulbs that consume and waste vast amounts of energy, switch to LED lighting that preserves the energy and lasts longer. In addition to saving energy, it will also cost you less. Further, in order to reduce water waste, make sure that all water sources are only used when necessary and fix every leakage. Opt for water-saving appliances like washing machines, dishwashers and refrigerators that are energy-friendly. Recycling is fairly easy - you just need to love nature enough. Make sure to divide your recyclables into different bags and learn the schedule of your neighborhood’s recyclable waste pickups. Finally, you can move onto planning your refuse waste management. Trash is bound to accumulate at some point, and after you’ve implemented all the new rules of reusing and recycling, it’s time to get rid of the trash you are left with. Start by noting the means you will use to dispose of your trash by assessing the cost, choosing removal crews and types of vehicles they have depending on the amount of waste you’re dealing with. Waste can often be difficult to classify, and in order to avoid hitting a roadblock in your disposal efforts, make sure to consult with environmental experts about proper waste classification. Lastly, draw up concrete goals for you waste reduction project. You’ll need a realistic set of goals if you want to make your waste management plan work. You can define these by assessing the percentage of trash you want to reduce over a period of time, all the while increasing the use of recyclable and reusable materials. Waste management is no easy task as it requires planning, preparation, time and effort, but with these guidelines you will be able to create a concrete plan of action to boost your waste management efforts and make the process as quick and efficient as possible.
Shop at second-hand stores. Use reusable bags and containers. Shop items made of recycled materials. Always dispose garbage properly, sort recyclable and compostable products and empty the contents into labeled containers. Buy products which are reusable, returnable or refillable. Buy in bulk, not individually wrapped items. Purchase liquid cleaning products, windshield washer fluid and antifreeze in concentrated forms. Compost food and yard waste. Food leftovers, tea bags, tree leaves and trimmings can be stored in a compost bin. Reduce the amount of promotional mail in your letter box. Ask for online invoicing. Thank you!
Hazardous waste can come in various forms, and it’s not always easy to manage them, much less regulate their disposal. However, the need for proper hazardous waste management has become more and more apparent over the past couple of years, as the imminent threat of global warming has made its presence felt more clearly. But what exactly are we dealing with when it comes to hazardous waste? What is hazardous waste? Waste that poses a threat to the environment and to human health is considered as hazardous, and they commonly exhibit either one or all of these traits: toxicity, ignitability, corrosivity, and reactivity. They can also be infectious, such as those coming from healthcare facilities, or radioactive. Hazardous waste can come in solid, liquid, sludge, and even gaseous states. What should be done with them? In an ideal world, all waste products could be recycled and utilized in some other industry. However, the reality is that the world is hardly an ideal setting, and recycling normally isn’t the end point of hazardous waste. Depending on how hazardous waste was created (either by physical, chemical, thermal, or even biological means), treatment and disposal may also vary. For example, certain organic wastes like those from the petroleum industry can be applied with biological treatment, such as landfarming, in which hazardous waste is mixed carefully with surface soil on a designated and suitable area of land. Microbes can be added to metabolize the waste, thus causing it to stabilize. On the other hand, physical treatment involves solidifying, concentrating, or reducing the volume of hazardous waste. Who is responsible for hazardous waste management? Hazardous waste management should be the responsibility of everyone. A combined effort is needed from everyone involved in producing, handling, and disposing of the hazardous waste. Each institution that deals with such waste – like healthcare facilities and industrial companies – should follow the standard regulations on handling hazardous waste, and have a set protocol in place. Employees and workers who find themselves at risk for exposure to such waste, or handle them directly, should be trained on how to properly deal with them. The 40-hour HAZWOPER training should be required for such employees. Whether you work in a facility that creates these hazardous waste, or are part of the cleanup crew to ensure their containment, it is important to understand the impact that such waste has on our lives. Hazardous waste is inevitable in today’s society, but with proper management, we can ensure that its impact on environmental and human health is contained.
All grown people sooner or later come to the conclusion that life is a game. Depending on your mindset, you can consider this as a positive or a negative assumption. But let's try to see things from the bright side now. When you're playing a game – outdoors or on your computer, you don't take things too seriously. Thus, the importance of your activity is dramatically reduced and the chance to get the job done increases. This principle is the foundation of what experts today call 'gamification' or making a particular job more fun. See how recycling and waste management can be successfully gamified as well. Gamification: Theory & Practice First, let's examine the concept of gamification a little bit more in-depth. The trick is to achieve a game-like experience in a non-game, real-life environment or situation. Of course, this is done using techniques and ideas directly taken from the science of playing: be it electronic games or classic sports played outside. Gamification is proven to be a working yet not aggressive method to make people more engaged with a given activity and make them behave in a desired, predicted way. Turning tasks into game is quite useful in the fields of problem-solving and chores management. Jobs that are generally considered boring are transformed to something more enjoyable or even attractive – cleaning chores, rubbish disposal, filling out surveys and documents/forms and many others. Gamification is also used in teaching with impressive results and that's completely understandable as young people today not always have a high motivation to learn at schools. How Volkswagen's Fun Theory Treats Junk Now it's time to see an interesting experiment - a rubbish recycling gamification. It comes from the world-renowned automotive brand Volkswagen. Their project is called The Fun Theory and has its own dedicated website. There, visitors can see videos that show various practical implementations of real-life games. Also, an award is going to be given to one of the selected ten finalists. Voting has already ended but the entries are still available to view on the site. Back on the actual glass junk experiment. The concept behind this example of gamification is that people rarely recycle the glass bottles collected at their homes. To encourage street passengers to return them, the guys at Volkswagen mixed a regular rubbish container and an arcade machine into one device that they called The Bottle Bank Arcade. For added authenticity, the machine even featured chiptune sounds typical to the vintage game consoles. Weird flashing lights were present, too. So, was the experiment a success? Simply put, yes. The results were more than satisfying and the figures - probably better than what the creators expected. Rubbish removal workers from Sydney suggest that the wide use of such gamifications can be very useful for every highly urbanised city around the world. It's also worth mentioning that not only young people were attracted by the colourful bank. All of this was just the effect of making it fun to return empty old bottles. People earned points for every bottle they threw in, which made them come back and actually recycle more. Do you think that gamification can be also used to solve other 'green' issues? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.