Aiming for zero waste: Ten steps to get started at the local level

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Extracts from “Resources up in Flames: The Economic Pitfalls of Incineration versus a Zero Waste Approach in the Global South".
Every community is different. There is no one way to prevent, reduce, reuse, recycle, or compost discarded materials. For instance, manual sorting of recyclables may be appropriate in one community and not in another. The ten steps listed below are applicable to most if not all communities interested in pursuing a zero waste future. A community group or local government can take any step to get started. These steps are not mutually exclusive. Integrating community participation in decision-making will enhance the success of any discard management program. This plan can be adopted at the community, municipal, or national level, depending on which approach will yield the best results in each situation. Also, one can work with many communities to adopt local zero waste goals, and the momentum generated can lead towards an eventual citywide or even national goal.

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