If you don’t recycle, you could be missing out on a lot of benefits. Recycling benefits the planet as well as your bottom line. You probably haven’t thought about these five benefits of a recycling program.
1. Save Money
In addition to saving money, recycling can also improve a business’ bottom line. Through recycling programs, people can avoid costs and, better yet, release funds to support other sustainable initiatives.
Recycling programs specifically can reduce janitorial fees, thus saving money for the facility. Now that your custodial staff does not have to go desk-to-desk collecting all of the waste and recycling, they can focus on other areas of your organization (such as cleaning work stations and other areas that you are paying for). Other important sustainability initiatives within the company could also be funded directly from these cost savings.
Well-planned and executed recycling programs can generate approximately $100.00 in savings per employee per year. Saving the planet and saving money can go hand in hand with recycling. There’s no downside to this!
2. Make Money
When companies make sustainable choices and implement recycling programs, they may be able to sell their recyclable waste for alternative uses, thus recouping the amount spent on financing the program, and in many cases even generating additional revenue. As recycling technology advances, our metals, plastics, and glass only become more precious as the cost of materials rises. Recycling materials are commodities, so check to see how much your recyclable materials are worth.
You can also increase your business’ profits with a centralized recycling program. The centralization of recycling programs forces employees to become more aware of how to properly dispose of trash. As a result, you will be able to reduce contamination of your recycling streams and thus increase the value of your recyclables.
3. Attract Higher Quality Recruits And Improve Employee Retention
In today’s world, not only are consumers demanding more and more sustainable products, but employees are as well.
A company that recycles is more likely to motivate employees. In fact, nearly one in 10 millennials would consider leaving a job if the company wasn’t sustainable. Because millennials plan to switch jobs more frequently than other generations, this is relevant.
4. Help Build A Community
Recycling programs give your employees the sense of being able to make a positive impact in their community.
Recycling encourages people to come together and keep each other accountable for their actions. We at NRI believe that culture is the most important factor in a successful recycling program. Employees want their employers to be doing the right thing. Communicating your program and its results will motivate them to continue to sort their waste effectively. The more motivated your employees are to participate in recycling, the more waste can be diverted from landfills and less contamination in the recycling stream occurs.
5. Protect The Environment
The environmental benefits of recycling are also reasons why it is important for businesses. Business recycling helps the environment, but how?
- a) Saves Energy
Materials can be reused and recycled more efficiently than they can be made from scratch. Newspapers are reused for printing, for example.
Aluminum cans and bottles may be recycled for up to 95% less energy than producing them from raw materials.
- b) Diverts More Waste From Landfill
The size of our garbage dumps increases along with our world population. Our landfills are filling up faster and faster each year with a wide variety of products, many of which are not biodegradable and will stay in landfills for centuries, emitting harmful gases.
According to the EPA fact sheet, our landfills are filled with the following waste which could be easily recycled:
- 21% of food, the largest component of landfill
- 14% of paper and card board
- 10% of rubber, leather, and textiles
- 18% of plastic
Adding these numbers up, we could potentially divert up to 63% of the waste that is sent to the landfill every year! Take a moment to consider that and the positive impact recycling can have on our planet.
- c) Prevents Global warming
Did you know that pulp and paper ranked fifth among all industrial energy consumers worldwide? Instead of generating new paper from raw materials, recycling paper saves more than 65% of the energy. We reduce emissions of greenhouse gases when we reduce energy consumption.
Carbon dioxide (one of the main greenhouse gases) is absorbed and held in trees, so trees contribute to reducing global warming. We save 17 trees with every ton of paper we recycle, which helps protect the planet.