This week is Zero Waste Week and I thought this was probably a good excuse to host some events at work to start raising awareness about waste. The theme of Zero Waste Week is ‘Do One More Thing” and there are lots of things that people can do that will reduce the ridiculous amount of waste that we create. My aim this week is to get people thinking along the lines of reuse rather than recycle – see my previous post on why I hate recycling.
At the hospital where I work as Sustainability Manager, we produce a lot of waste. And I mean that in the sense of waste being something that is no longer to be used for the original intention. However, in actual fact I don’t believe it is really waste.
So, for Zero Waste Week I decided to have a series of events for the week, all to get people thinking about waste and, yes recycling if it can’t be reused.
After two days, which I couldn’t call the busiest two days I’ve had in terms of talking to people, I have had some success and am developing a few ideas for further waste reduction projects.
We started with a uniform and stationery amnesty on Monday. I had several trollies full of stationery delivered and have distributed several reams of coloured paper and a few boxes of folders already. I also got to talk to a few people as they passed; always worthwhile.
Tuesday we had our new waste management company in with free lollipops – we were hoping for pens (pens are like gold dust in a hospital and open many a door) but they didn’t arrive in time! However, they had a recycling game which gave us something to talk to staff and visitors about – many didn’t realise that plastic bottles could be made into fleece jackets or that their food waste collected from their doorsteps is used to generate electricity. Although not as good as pens, lollipops are a useful way to invite people to talk to you – or just to put a smile on their face as they wait for the lift.
We still have three days left although I am trusting in our catering team to deliver tomorrow whilst I am away in London.