I’ve been in the waste industry for some time and I still have to scratch my head in wonder when it comes to exactly what a low priority waste disposal and its costs are for manufacturers. And this does not consider the effect manufacturing waste and its own disposal has on our environment.
I meet with companies every day that do not make their trash disposal a priority until it becomes a problem. Even then the priority is to just get rid of the waste and not the absolute most economical and environmentally friendly way to do it.
The majority of businesses that I have been asked to consider have put waste at such a low priority that they do not even know what they have been spending on waste removal. They have been so focused on what is heading out the front door that they cannot see the enormous effect it has on the company’s bottom line. Until that is, someone like me points it out.
One of many reasons that this is happening is that, when a company first starts manufacturing, they probably do not produce much waste. As the production increases, so does their waste. Typically, the invoice will head to accounts payable where it really is paid. AP is not accountable for monitoring how much is being used on waste removal. So , whilst the production increases, so do the costs of waste removal. And even if someone in accounts payable was to question the increased costs, they would probably be told that “it’s the cost of manufacturing and I think we have the best deal we can get”.
So the costs just spiral up or over unchecked. Invoice comes in, payment goes out. Waste haulers love this phenomenon. And trust in me when I say they know all about this. They are going to do everything they can to keep it going. But that is another subject.
Today, with overflowing landfills, world wide warming, and all the other environmental issues we’re facing, I really believe that manufacturers need to raise their awareness and prioritize for the future. Once the awareness of what they are producing as waste, what effect it is wearing the environment and what it’s costing them to dump it, they can start to learn how to lessen their impact on the environmental surroundings and their bottom line. They are able to then become responsible leaders in their community and have an optimistic impact on the environment that we all need to protect.