THE CARBON Trust has launched an international standard for organisational waste reduction.
The Carbon Trust Waste Standard will be awarded to organisations able to demonstrate that they are measuring, managing and reducing waste year-on-year.
Following the successful completion of a pilot stage, five UK businesses have become the first to achieve the award: Whitbread, PwC, AkzoNobel Decorative Paints UK, Renishaw and the Football Association.
The new waste standard is the latest in a line of Carbon Trust recognition initiatives, which also cover water and carbon emission reduction.
In the UK alone, the waste sector is responsible for 17 million tonnes of carbon emissions a year, around 3% of all UK emissions.
Calling on businesses to take urgent action to become more sustainable, Tom Delay, Chief Executive of the Carbon Trust, said:
“We are living beyond our means, drawing on natural resources at a rate that cannot continue without leading to an ecological and economic crunch. Organisations that fail to bring sustainability inside their operations will face the consequences of increasingly scarce or expensive commodities, water and energy.
“Reducing waste and resource use, along with carbon emissions and water, is a crucial part of the transformation that all businesses will need to make in the next decade. By taking early action and opening themselves up to independent certification showing real reductions, the businesses that hold our Standards are showing themselves to be genuine leaders and are putting themselves in a much stronger competitive position.”
The Carbon Trust Waste Standard requires organisations to demonstrate that waste streams are being reduced every year, or used more effectively, for example through increased reuse, recycling or recovery.
The standard also includes a qualitative assessment to show that waste is being managed responsibly. This will include considerations outside of an organisation’s direct control, such as having a diligent procurement policy for goods and waste management services, and looking at downstream impacts through products and packaging.
Dr Richard Swannell, Director of Sustainable Food Systems at WRAP, said:
“WRAP welcomes the Carbon Trust’s waste standard and recognises the challenge than it represents. We wish the Carbon Trust and participating organisations well in tackling this difficult task.”