On a Mission to Cut the Trash in Half

WasteZero is a company on a mission. Our objective: To cut the trash in half across the United States.  We’ve been around since 1991, and today we work with more than 800 cities, towns, and counties, helping them reduce their volumes of municipal solid waste and increase recycling rates.

The Trash Problem

Why are we on this mission?  Basically, solid waste is an environmental and financial nightmare for our cities and towns, and we need to address it:

  • Every year, we throw away more than 500 billion pounds of waste, and that number is rising
  • For our towns and cities, the financial cost of disposing of all this waste has been rising faster than the rate of inflation for decades
  • The environmental cost is also tremendous, as mega-landfills are bad for the environment in many different ways, and natural resources are wasted as we throw away vast quantities of materials that should be recycled.

We could solve this problem if more people had the right incentives to reduce, reuse, and recycle.  That’s where WasteZero comes into the picture.

The Solution

We work with cities, towns, and counties across the country to create incentives for people to reduce waste and to recycle.  We do that by designing, implementing, and running next-generation pay-as-you-throw (PAYT) programs, which we call WasteZero Trash Metering™ programs.

How do these programs work?  Think about this:  For nearly everything we need, the more we use, the more we pay.  If we use more water, we get a bigger water bill.  Electricity, food, clothes, housing, and more work the same way.  Except trash.

Typically, we pay a flat rate for trash collection, no matter how much or how little we throw away.  It’s not fair, and it encourages wasteful behavior.

Pay-as-you-throw programs charge residents based on the amount of trash they throw away.  Those who throw away more, pay more.  Those who throw away less (and recycle more), pay less!  It’s simple and powerfully effective.  This simple incentive encourages people to reduce, reuse, and recycle more than any other solution on the planet.