Did you know Americans throw away enough office paper each year to build a 12-foot wall from Los Angeles to New York City? The average person generates more than four pounds of waste each day and spends most of their waking hours at work. With as few as 10 percent of businesses recycling nationwide, there is plenty of room for improvement.

With Earth Day approaching on April 22, it’s important to remember that businesses big and small can make a difference when it comes to environmental sustainability.Republic Services and Waste Management of Arizona discussed how their companies help Arizona businesses.

Waste Management of Arizona offers eight tips to help green your business:

Recycle more, more often. Unlike landfills, recycling removes waste and turns it back into useful products. Make it easier to recycle by putting containers all around your work environment, including meeting rooms and individual offices. Remember to keep food, liquids and plastic bags out of your recycling bins.

Buy greener. Did you know that a foam coffee cup never decomposes? Bring more reusable cups, plates and utensils in and send less landfill waste out. Purchase items made from post-consumer (recycled) materials.

Stop waste at the source. Only print documents when needed. Launch a paperless billing program or incentivize customers to use your existing one.

Don’t dump, donate! Find organizations that can reuse items you no longer need. If you have large amounts of unused food from an event, reach out to an organization like Waste Not to rescue and redistribute your perishable food to people who need it.

Build for tomorrow. Engineer greywater technology into your plans and put used water to work in your landscape. Remember, many construction materials can be reused or recycled, too.

Crush waste and costs. Solar-powered compactors hold five times more material, reducing collections and costs. Ideal for schools, corporate campuses and communities.

Create a green fleet. Utilize tax credits to help trade-in diesels and company-owned cars and vans for clean-air compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles. Waste Management operates public fueling stations for CNG vehicles in Central Phoenix and Mesa.

Never stop learning. Designate a “recycling ambassador” to educate everyone on how to recycle in your area. Free resources are available at www.RecycleOftenRecyleRight.com.

From APS and Intel to mom and pop restaurants, Waste Management of Arizona works with businesses of all sizes to achieve their environmental goals without breaking the bank. Find out how WMAZ can help at www.ThinkGreen.com.

Republic Services makes office recycling easy:
Republic Services offers free Blue Print™ Waste Assessments to identify and scale recycling solutions to meet the unique needs of businesses. Assessment results are used to formulate an All-in-One Office™ recycling program designed specifically for customers’ needs.

All-in-One Office™ provides customers with more than just the right containers, it provides a complete education program that includes employee training to drive understanding and awareness, printed materials to promote the program and employee communications to continue engaging and educating employees on the importance of sustainability.

Simple ways you can be more sustainable this Earth Day:

  • Resolve to reduce, reuse or recycle a little more each day.
  • Make sure recyclable items are clean, dry and empty.
  • Check with your recycling provider on acceptable items in your community.
  • Reuse plastic shopping bags on your next trip to the store.
  • Reduce food waste with careful menu planning.

For more information on the Republic Services Blue Print™ Waste Assessment or to learn more about the All-in-One Office™ recycling program visit RepublicServices.com.

– Written by Josh Coddington, marketing and communications manager, Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce. This article is part of the Chamber’s Business Buzz newsletter.

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