2012 Sustainability Report
Locally owned and operated since 1991, GreenWaste and our sister company, Zanker Road Resource Management (1985), have continually pushed the boundaries of traditional recycling technology to redefine our communities’ expectations of us as collectors and processors. By treating the “waste” we manage as a commodity, we continually strive to increase the recycling rates in our processing facilities by recovering as much material as possible.
As we make every effort to safely and courteously service our communities and maximize our diversion from landfills, we also focus on minimizing our carbon footprint and teaching future generations the value of our planet’s limited resources. As we accomplish these goals, we believe we are continuing the legacy of sustainability that has defined our companies since our inception.
We are confident our 2012 Sustainability Report is a testament to this vision and will guide us to actualize our corporate mantras of being “a brighter shade of green” as we “rethink, reinvent, renew.”
In this report, we chronicle our past and current successes while clearly laying out our companies’ future goals. We pledge to learn from our accomplishments as we help our communities endeavor to reach “zero waste” and continue to push our companies to be leaders of the industry.
GreenWaste Recovery Becomes Green Business Certified
Please join us in growing the pool of Green Business Certified under this program! For more information about becoming a Green Business in other Bay Area counties, please visit www.greenbiz.ca.gov.
Since our inception in 1991, GreenWaste has consistently sought new opportunities to integrate environmental and conservation programs into our ongoing operations.
As a materials hauler, we have been using biodiesel fuels since we assembled our first fleet, we are constantly increasing route efficiencies to reduce vehicle miles traveled and most recently, we have begun replacing our aging fleet with vehicles fueled by compressed natural gas.
As a materials processor, we are innovators and have pioneered cutting-edge techniques, we have some of the highest diversion rates in the industry, we have installed 80,000 sq. ft. of solar panels on our Material Recovery Facility (MRF) and we compost the organics that are recovered from the garbage we process.
Our most recent accomplishment is the certification of our corporate office as a Green Business through the Santa Clara County Green Business Program. This was easy because we already walk the walk; we just had to go through the actual certification process. We have long held the values and implemented practices to increase energy efficiency, reduce water consumption, minimize the generation of waste, decrease the use of single-use products, patronize local and green businesses and purchase and use products that are non-hazardous and non-toxic, for the benefit of our employees and the environment in which we live and work. We think this is just smart business.
GreenWaste Recovery Becomes Climate RegisteredTM
GreenWaste has received Climate RegisteredTM status. Climate RegisteredTM status is awarded to members of the Climate Registry that measure their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions according to the Registry's rigorous voluntary reporting program.
The Climate Registry is a non-profit organization that operates the only carbon footprint registry in North America. "Becoming Climate Registered isn't easy," said former Executive Director Diane Wittenberg of the Climate Registry. "These organizations have measured the GHG footprints with accuracy and transparency. No greenwashing here; that's real environmental leadership."
By understanding what emissions are being generated by the operations at GreenWaste, we can see where processes can improve and emissions can be reduced - through fleet fuel changes, energy efficiency at the offices and other management practices. Already, GreenWaste has begun generating renewable on-site power at our MRF, which helps to offset over 100 metric tons of GHG's a year. Additionally, we utilize biodiesel fuels and are looking to expand out alternative fuels profile. By choosing to voluntarily report, we are staying ahead of the curve, anticipating potential impacts from new federal and state regulations.
As a part of understanding the total GHG impact of GreenWaste's collection and processing operations throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, the net benefit from recycling and composting materials were calculated in terms of avoided GHG emissions. In 2009, GreenWaste avoided over 250,000 metric tons of GHGs, making our avoided emissions 20 times higher than the emissions emitted by our operations. These calculated GHG benefits from recycling and composting are a benefit to the world as a whole, since there are multiple aspects to successful recycling programs. Therefore, these avoided emissions are not considered an offset to the operations. Instead, GreenWaste prefers to use this information to help generate an awareness and understanding of how important these recycling programs are to the local communities we serve.
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