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Solid Waste

  • Audit your waste stream

  • Divert materials from your dumpster through reuse or recycling. Cardboard, plastic buckets, broken pallets, plastic film, office paper, plastic strapping, metals, and oil are common recyclable materials.

  • Reduce the use of office paper by printing and copying double-sided, using electronic mail, circulating printed materials, centralizing paper files, and storing documents electronically.

  • Work with suppliers to reduce packaging materials and to use recyclable packaging materials.

  • Reduce waste generation by making changes in materials, processes, or operations.

  • Consider using a smaller dumpster or decreasing the pickup frequency.

  • Consider investing in a garbage compactor to decrease pickup frequency.

  • Visit materials exchange web sites, such as IMEX. Sometimes your ‘waste’ can become someone’s feedstock to their operation.

 

Hazardous Waste

  • Switch to less hazardous products or raw materials.

  • Perform a mass balance, starting with the most used, most toxic, and/or most expensive materials. This will help you identify places for improvement.

  • Segregate waste streams to improve opportunities for reuse/recycling. Regularly look for companies who could use your waste as a product.

  • Establish a centralized purchasing program.

  • Improve inventory control and housekeeping.

  • Eliminate leaks on equipment, pumps, valves and pipes.

  • Decrease cleaning by planning the production schedule, dedicating process equipment, and cleaning equipment as soon as possible.
     

Other Solid Waste Resources

Washington State Beyond Waste Program
 

Waste Reduction Strategies

IBM Guide for Business Waste Reduction
 

Local Recycling Resources-Washington State
 

Waste Reduction Programs

EPA WasteWise Program
 

Water Conservation

  • Inventory your water use. Read and record your master meter at the beginning of each shift for a week to begin to understand basic use patterns.

  • Check the amount of water used for cleaning (food processors). It is often greater than expected.

  • Change sequential baths to counter current flow. Using the dirtiest water at the beginning of a series of baths or rinses and the cleanest water at the end matches the quality of the water to the need and can reduce water use significantly.

  • Change any single pass water use to recycled water. Cooling towers and compressors are common single pass pieces of equipment.
     

Backyard Conservation

Natural Yard Care
 

Energy Conservation

  • Contact your electric and/or gas provider to see if they provide rebates or technical assistance in evaluating potential energy savings. Puget Sound Energy and other providers offer some services along these lines.

  • Identify and repair compressed air leaks, and evaluate your supply vs. demand of compressed air. The Compressed Air Challenge web site offers detailed information and resources. Compressed air is one of the largest energy uses in the industrial sector.

  • Regularly maintain boilers and other equipment to save energy and costs.

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Residential Energy Saving Tips

Web Resources for Energy Conservation


 

Wastewater

  • Install a wastewater meter, if the city allows it. Typically industries discharge less water than they purchase, but are billed based on the incoming water meter.

  • Develop a water and wastewater "flow" balance. This will help you target areas for water reuse and/or reduction.

  • Review your water and sewer bills. Ensure that the water use and sewer discharge agree and that the rate charged is correct.

  • Use high pressure, low flow, automatic nozzles. This will reduce water use and sewer discharge.

  • Perform an initial dry cleanup prior to using water to wash solids down the drain. This will reduce the water use and wastewater loading. Establish a Standard Operating Procedure for clean up.

RESOURCES / LINKS

Sustainability has arrived and Sustainable Solutions Consulting is ready to help you move your business towards Sustainability.