1. Conduct a waste auditThis helps determine how much waste your facility produces and the type of waste being generated. Use this waste audit tool kit to help you plan and execute your next waste audit.
2. Work with your custodial teamThis helps to identify any current collection issues with your recycling program. The custodial team often have a unique perspective and provide valuable input into the design of containers that will work best in your facility. Including the custodial team during the design stage will also help the sustainability manager to engage them in the recycling program because they will feel ownership due to their valuable input.
3. Look at your floor plan and traffic flow.Use the data from your waste audit to identify the areas where waste is typically generated. You can then identify the type of bins you’ll need for these areas in terms of capacity and stream collection. Black & McDonald who achieved a 93% diversion rate, looked at their traffic flow and mapped out the placement of recycling bins on a floor plan before they implemented their recycling program. [caption id="attachment_3003" align="aligncenter" width="613"]
4. Securing budgetSecuring budget for a recycling program can sometimes be a challenge because they often incorrectly thought of as an expense rather than a business investment. There are many ways your recycling program can generate funds through rebates and incentives and even cost reduction processes. Read this article on solutions for campus recycling funding for more ideas.
5. Select the right capacity.Look at your waste audit results of your facility to determine the capacity of containers you’ll need. Talk to your waste hauler about which streams you’re able to collect, this varies by city and region. For example, you’ll need to know whether you collect your recyclables together (commingled or single stream) or whether you need to separate out cans and bottles from paper.
6. Select containers that have changeable posters or graphics.Your recycling program is going to change over time and you need to communicate these changes to the people using the bins. If your containers don’t have recycling labels then create posters and stick them to the wall next to the recycling bin. This helps people make the right choice when they go to toss their waste.
|Recycling bin with text only graphics
|Recycling bin with facility-specific waste images and text
7. Choose restrictive, color-coordinated openingsThey are key to helping people use the recycling program effectively. The Xcel Energy Center maintains consistent colors for the recycling bin openings and recycling posters throughout their facility. This helped them recycle 66% of their waste. [caption id="attachment_3938" align="aligncenter" width="943"]
8. Keep bins together.If you are opting for individual bins per stream, make sure you connect them together. When you have different stand- alone bins (called Rogue and Orphans) they can easily become separated. When that happens people don’t know which bin to use, they just use the nearest one. [caption id="attachment_2272" align="aligncenter" width="516"]
9. Create awareness before your bins arrive.Tell everyone about the recycling program; what your goals are, where the bins will be located, and what exactly is recyclable. Having a recycling program launch helps build awareness and get people on board. Culture is the number one driver of recycling program success, so help people get passionate and about what you’re doing. Communication was a key component in the Toronto Transit Commission’s recycling program. Senior Construction Inspector JohnTran, says “An email was sent to each department head before they received the new bins, letting them know about the new “no waste office” program. This messaging was then trickled down to the employees.” [gallery link="file" ids="11311,11312,11313"]
The TTC has achieved a 70% diversion waste with their office waste recycling program.