ecomaine is fortunate to have a community of passionate supporters who encourage those in their hometowns to frame their waste-reduction and diversion awareness around the Waste Hierarchy. The “Three R’s” –reduce, reuse, recycle—are a well-established standard in green thinking. However, some folks are still new to the concept of including additional practices in the hierarchy; Compost/Anaerobic Digestion and Waste-to-Energy are all ways we can improve our sustainability, keep things out of the landfill and shrink our footprint.
Harnessing these rungs of our “diversion ladder” and using them to frame the way we approach waste management at all levels allows materials that would otherwise be going into our landfills or polluting our oceans to be “pushed up the ladder” and become a part of the circular economy, supporting green living and a sustainable future.
How do we ensure that the Waste Hierarchy is put to broad and continuous use? It is well established that long term environmental balance and a sustainable future can only be achieved through strategic public policy changes. The process of implementing these new or improved local, state and federal policies is galvanized and hurried along most effectively through continuous community buy-in.
That being said; supporting the Waste Hierarchy at the local level through advocacy groups, getting involved in volunteer efforts, joining or founding environmental action committees in your community or school district, speaking at your local town or city council meeting, joining clubs at your university and connecting with the public at sustainability-centric events are all small ways you can have a big impact. Continuous, comprehensive, and extensive individual and community support is the most important thing you can be a part of when it comes to making long term changes stick. Get Involved!
Written by Gabe Gauvin, ecomaine Communications & Outreach Intern