Zero Waste Facility Certification

Inspired by the Zero Waste business community, the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council and its Certification Development Committee have created the first third-party Zero Waste Facility Certification program for facilities that meets the Zero Waste Principles of the Zero Waste International Alliance (ZWIA). Our facility certification program goes beyond diversion numbers and focuses on the upstream policies and practices that make Zero Waste successful in an organization. We have crafted the facility certification to meet the requests of Zero Waste businesses for a valid, comprehensive verification of their Zero Waste achievements.


The USZWBC 3rd Party Zero Waste Facility Certification does the following:

  • Supports ZWIA definition of no waste to landfill, incineration and the environment
  • Drives the development of new markets and new ideas towards a Zero Waste Economy
  • Meets Zero Waste businesses request for valid and comprehensive third party certification
  • Focuses on upstream policies and practices beyond diversion or recycling
  • Emphasizes strong Total Participation: Training of all employees, ZW relationships with Vendors and customers
Requirements for Certification
  1. Zero Waste policy in place
  2. 90% overall diversion from landfill and incineration for non-hazardous wastes
    • -Discarded materials are reduced, reused, recycled, composted or recovered for productive use in nature or the economy at biological temperatures and pressures
      -Materials can be processed above ambient biological temperatures (>200° F) to recover energy from the 10% residual, but they do not count as part of the 90% diversion
      -Reused materials (office furniture, pallets, paper, etc) are eligible to count as part of the 90% diversion requirement
  3. Meet all federal, state/provincial, and local solid waste and recycling regulations
  4. Data provided to USZWBC has been published formally
  5. Data documents a base year and measurements since the base year
  6. Commit to submit 12 months of data to USZWBC annually (Data submitted will be public and published on the USZWBC website)
  7. Case Study of Zero Waste initiatives can be published on USZWBC website
  8. Recertification is required every three years
  9. Contamination is not to exceed 10% of each material once it leaves the company site

Learn more about how your facility can become certified as Zero Waste