The innovative strategies behind the 16 winners of the EPA’s national WasteWise awards, which recognize waste prevention and diversion accomplishments, kept over 355,801 tons out of the landfill and delivered $17.7 million in avoided landfill fees. The best part? Any building can implement these initiatives and reap the economic rewards.
The Presidio Trust, which manages the Presidio of San Francisco urban national park, took the Federal Government Partner of the Year award for the fifth consecutive year. Its efforts include an in-house yard waste compost program that recovers the majority of the green debris generated in the 1,492-acre park, composts it on-site and uses the compost for landscaping and reforestation. The compost program alone saves more than $75,000 every year, mostly from avoiding transit and disposal fees. The trust consistently diverts 64% or more of its waste from the landfill.
CenturyLink Field in Seattle, home to the Seattle Seahawks and Seattle Sounders FC, touts its waste diversion program as part of a larger sustainability effort. Achieving a 97% waste diversion rate in 2016 and more than 95% for each of the last four years, the facility switched to compostable versions of all food service products and vessels. Last year, it also transitioned to paper-based straws that are ocean-degradable.