Companies Implementing Zero Waste
Walmart is a company that has started implementing the Zero Waste program. Walmart’s goal is to one day no longer have dumpsters behind their stores and clubs, and to reach that goal Walmart is motivating their associates and suppliers around the world to find a solutions to excess food and develop ways to turn waste into revenue. On Walmart’s website they stated, “In 2011, Walmart has reduced waste in our U.S. operations by more than 80 percent, returning more than $231 million to the business last year. The reduction, which brings Walmart closer to our goal to create zero waste, has the potential to prevent 11.8 million metric tons of CO2 emissions annually ("Walmart Corporate - Walmart's goal is to create zero waste).”
There are three things that Walmart’s main focus is going to be. The first thing that Walmart is focusing on is packaging. Walmart rethinking their processes and product presentation so they can cut back on unnecessary waste and save their customers money. “During the first 10 months of 2011, we used about 14.4 million footwear replenishment boxes, reducing paper consumption by 692 tons, the environmental equivalent of more than 2,500 trees. We also avoided 400,000 pounds of solid waste and consumed 2.4 million fewer gallons of water. We also eliminated more than 1 billion feet of wire ties from our toy packaging – enough to wrap around the earth nearly 8 times ("Walmart Corporate - Walmart Global Responsibility: Packaging”).”
Walmart’s second goal is to get their customers to use reusable canvas bags and eliminate plastic bags. “In 2011, we reduced plastic bag waste across our global operations by approximately 3.1 billion bags, a 35% reduction per store from our 2007 baseline. We have a goal to reduce the weight of plastic bag waste by 33% globally by 2013 ("Walmart Corporate - Walmart Global Responsibility: Plastic Bags.").” However, I have to admit that I have never seen the reusable canvas bags advertised for sale at the Walmart’s I have been to in Connecticut. I am not sure how Walmart is reducing their plastic bag waste, but I think that if Walmart really wants to implement Zero Waste they should implement these goals in all their stores around the world.
Lastly, Walmart’s goal is to redesign ways to recycle electronics. In 2013, Walmart started a smartphone trade-in program at more than 3,600 U.S. stores and Sam’s clubs. This trade-in program makes it easier and less expensive to trade in for the newest smartphone without having to throw away your old one and it ending up in a landfill. Walmart also encourages customers to trade in electronics like MP3 players, video games, cameras, and laptops for gift cards. I think it is good that Walmart is offering this program and gift card incentives to its customers because they will be willing to trade-in their electronics if they know they are helping the economy while getting something in return like, a new electronic or a gift card....