Waste and Recycling Management Myths Debunked

Businesses of all sizes, from large industrial manufacturers to retail shopping centers, highrise office buildings, and even the “mom and pop” deli, understand the importance of keeping their eyes on the bottom line and closely adhering to their operating budgets.  

As costs continue to increase, you might wonder if maintaining an environmentally friendly waste management and recycling program is worth the effort and expense. 

You may question whether recycling makes good financial sense for your business, how your recycling efforts could affect your brand image, and how potential investors will view your company’s ESG initiatives.

If you’re uncertain about the benefits of corporate sustainability and eco-friendly companies, possibly because of unanswered questions or misinformation, let’s debunk some of the most common myths about recycling management programs.

 

Myth #1: “Recycling isn’t good for business financially.”

One of the most common myths is that recycling does not make good financial sense for most businesses. But is that really the case?

 

Branding and Consumer Awareness

In addition to the obvious environmental benefits of energy and water conservation, reducing waste to landfills, a recycling program will improve your company’s brand image. 

Companies like Avocado Green Mattress, Seventh Generation, and Patagonia make sustainability essential in their marketing and advertising. And beauty brands like MAC Cosmetics and Kiehl’s offer their customers rewards programs or free products when they return empty makeup containers to the store for recycling. 

These and many other companies know that while consumers make individual efforts to recycle in their homes and personal lives, they also want to do businesses whose environmental and ethical values align with their own.

Additionally, potential tenants wanting to lease commercial space in office buildings and retail centers often look for real estate management companies with well-established recycling programs and other eco-friendly initiatives. This can means more sales and customer loyalty for your company. 

 

Myth #2: “My investors don’t care if we are eco-friendly” 

You might think that investors are only interested in seeing a significant return on their investments. While that is partially true, they also understand that recycling and other “eco-friendly” programs are a good investment. 

In an article entitled The Investor Revolution: Shareholders are getting serious about sustainability in the Harvard Business Review, Cyrus Taraporevala, president and CEO of State Street Global Advisors, says: 

ESG issues have become much more important for us as long-term investors, … We seek to analyze material issues such as climate risk, board quality, or cybersecurity in terms of how they impact financial value in a positive or a negative way. That’s the integrative approach we are increasingly taking for all of our investments.” -

As consumer commitment to recycling and other environmental issues continues to grow, businesses and investors can expect an increase in sales and profits.

 

Myth #3: “ESG initiatives are ‘just for show.

ESG initiatives (Environmental, Social, and Governance) are holistic, company-wide ambitions that touch every aspect of your business. It includes recycling and waste management and involves everything from employee health and safety to your company’s ethical business practices to comply with state, local, and other governmental regulations. 

 

Attracting and Retaining Employees

The ‘social’ part of ESG relates to people. Their health and safety, equal opportunity in your hiring practices, and job satisfaction and retention.

For instance, potential employees searching for jobs in the construction and manufacturing industries are looking for companies with reasonable safety procedures. Jobseekers want to work for companies with policies that show that they value their employees. 

 

Attracting Investors

When investors look at a business with a well-managed, data-driven approach to recycling and an ESG program,  they see a good investment. 

“ESG investing is one of the fastest-growing trends in the financial industry. Today, there are numerous ESG-oriented mutual funds, which have attracted inflows of over $5 billion”. - ESG in 2021: If You Don't Care, Here's Why You Should 

 

Myth #4: “Zero-Waste-to-Landfill is not a realistic goal for a large corporation.”

And finally, some might say that corporate sustainability measures like zero waste to landfill are only realistic for individuals and small businesses. But this is not the case!

Municipalities like Austin, Texas, and large corporations like Microsoft that take corporate sustainability seriously have set zero waste to landfill goals. They have been able to divert up to 90% of their waste through recycling and other programs. 

 

Waste and Recycling Solutions to Achieve Your ESG Goals

At Keter Environmental Services, we take corporate sustainability seriously. That is why we offer customized, data-driven, and sustainable recycling and waste solutions that will benefit your business. Contact us to learn how we can help you design the perfect recycling waste management program for your company.

Interested in learning more about ESG compliance? Check out our guide below! 

 

Read ESG Compliance Guide