Zero Waste is a concept utilized by communities as well as businesses. This approach says that waste should be thought of as a “residual product” or simply a “potential resource” to counter our basic acceptance of waste as a normal course of events. In the initial phase, companies strive to reduce waste generation through such factors as greater efficiencies, reusable packaging and divert unavoidable waste to various recycling streams. Now, MNCs like GM adopt a LANDFILL – FREE manufacturing. To qualify for LANDFILL –FREE status, facilities must handle by-products by any other method except placement in a landfill. Materials sent to a recycling center and subsequently landfilled by the recycling center must not exceed 1% by weight of the facility’s total.
Zero waste embodies the goal of a closed-loop system that reuses resources rather than creating waste. Such an approach requires consideration of the entire life-cycle of products, processes and systems within the context of a comprehensive systems understanding of our interactions with nature and search for inefficiencies at all stages.
A Zero Waste strategy supports Triple Bottom Line sustainability goals of economic wellbeing, environmental protection, and social wellbeing. Economic wellbeing is enhanced by solid waste elimination and improved production efficiencies. Environmental protection is promoted through the consumption of less new raw materials from nature, and the elimination of waste materials returned to nature. Social wellbeing is heightened through improvements that better safeguard society’s scarce resources, as well as through the creation of new jobs in the “closed loop” processing involved with reuse and reprocessing of materials.
Glen Raven is a textile manufacturer, Burnsville Plant in North Carolina is a leader in sailcloth , flag and banner fabrics in North America , cutting-edge performance fabrics for ballistic vests for the U.S. military and protective work apparel for electric utility workers. During a plant renovation in the late 1990s, a recovery and handling system for nylon and polyester fibers was put into place starting with segregation. In addition to recycling nylon and polyester fibers, Burnsville recycles batteries, fluorescent tubes, clear plastics and cardboard. Wood pallets are repaired and reused multiple times and reuseable plastic crates are used for receipt of raw materials. Food waste from the plant cafeteria is collected by a local hog farmer. The remaining waste items, however, were the most difficult to recycle, including materials such as contaminated fibers and floor sweepings.
It was at this point that Burnsville Plant called on assistance from its sisterplant,theAnderson,S.C.,Sunbrella fabrics manufacturing center, which has been landfill-free for three years. Through additional separation and reprocessing steps, difficult to-recycle waste items can be used to create absorbent materials, such as those used to control the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Other reprocessed materials can be used for filler in packaging and insulation. Anderson Plant has advanced to this step and Burnsville Plant will implement a similar approach.
Seminar on LANDILL-FREE INITIATIVES
Venue: VJIM Auditorium, Bachupally, Hyderabad 500090
Time: 11.30AM to 01.30PM
Date: 18th October 2013