USZWBC has adopted the only peer-reviewed, internationally accepted definition of Zero Waste, as developed by the Zero Waste International Alliance (ZWIA):
“Zero Waste is a goal that is ethical, economical, efficient and visionary, to guide people in changing their lifestyles and practices to emulate sustainable natural cycles, where all discarded materials are designed to become resources for others to use. Zero Waste means designing and managing products and processes to systematically avoid and eliminate the volume and toxicity of waste and materials, conserve and recover all resources, and not burn or bury them. Implementing Zero Waste will eliminate all discharges to land, water or air that are a threat to planetary, human, animal or plant health.”
This is the goal for which we strive.
Measures of success in meeting this goal are outlined in the ZWIA Zero Waste Business Principles and the Global Principles for Zero Waste Communities. Businesses and communities that achieve over 90% diversion of waste from landfills, incinerators and the environment are considered to be successful in achieving Zero Waste.
USZWBC is being organized to protect this vision of the proper use of resources, to establish best practices and enhance the value of the term Zero Waste in the marketplace to those who value sustainability, environment and the triple bottom line. “Zero Waste to Landfill” is not accepted as a goal, as it usually means burning a substantial portion of discarded materials. USZWBC is building on over a decade of experience nationally and internationally in differentiating those businesses that excel at meeting the high standards of Zero Waste and will champion the highest and best use of resources.