Sustainability101 Blog

11 Sep 2022

­ P­hoto: Compology Did you know, the average front load dumpster is 53% full when collected? What’s more, 13% of scheduled pickups do not happen! We know this from the 160,000 waste metering and monitoring sensors installed in dumpsters nationwide…  Continue Reading...

28 Jul 2022

“Follow the Blueprint: Compliance for Sustainability Success”  originally appeared in the July/August 2022 issue of IFMA’s FMJ  Staying ahead of new and continually updated regulations is key to maintaining compliance and avoiding potentially costly fines. But did you know, compliance…  Continue Reading...

25 Jul 2022

Over the past few years, we have been hearing a lot about how consumers have been given the burden of recycling for too long. John Oliver, the New York Times, Frontline and others have given a hard look at the…  Continue Reading...

18 Jul 2022

How will California’s SB 1383 impact the food system? Thanks to Replate for organizing this panel featuring industry peers and experts from Great Forest, CalRecycle, UC Davis, and the San Francisco International Airport. The discussion centered around food generators, including…  Continue Reading...

1 Jul 2022

Inflation has hit the waste industry hard, just as it has touched almost every aspect of our lives. A big driver is the cost of diesel, which is currently around $5.719. Since most waste hauling vehicles are diesel powered, waste…  Continue Reading...

23 Mar 2022

Thank you to everyone who attended our special Earth Day webinar on April 14 to learn all about plastics and pollution, food waste and climate change, and what we can all do as individuals and businesses to protect and INVEST…  Continue Reading...

11 Feb 2022

What are the key waste trends for 2022 that will impact your business? We’ve rounded up the top three trends to note, and included recommendations on what you should do. Managing waste sustainably is one of the most effective strategies…  Continue Reading...

17 Nov 2021

Largest Waste Characterization Study  In 2022, Great Forest completed the largest and most comprehensive waste characterization study to date focused on commercial buildings. That study has now been peer-reviewed and  published in The Journal of Solid Waste Technology and Management.…  Continue Reading...

2 Nov 2021

“…contamination rates have in many ways become the most important metric in the recycling sector.” — Waste Dive Recycling contamination happens when non-recyclable materials end up in your recycling stream. For example when food is left in recyclable containers that…  Continue Reading...

21 Oct 2021

This article was originally published by Great Forest on LinkedIn. “Just one word… Plastics. There’s a great future in plastics.” Those famous lines from the 1967 movie The Graduate were pretty accurate. Today, plastic is everywhere. Their usefulness is undeniable.…  Continue Reading...

20 Sep 2021

TRUE CERTIFIED ZERO WASTE CASE STUDY Project: Great Forest, Inc. Certification Level: Gold Diversion Rate: 91.3% Type of Facility: 5-story Brownstone Facility operations: Office floors   In March 2021, Great Forest became TRUE certified to the Gold level for Zero…  Continue Reading...

18 Aug 2021

ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) is becoming a priority for businesses that want to identify risks and growth opportunities in the face of increasingly dire climate change news. The UN’s series of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reports often…  Continue Reading...

16 Jun 2021

Businesses across the country are starting to see their offices return to capacity as workers return full-time or on a hybrid schedule. Restarting right not only means making sure everything is in order, in working condition, and functioning at maximum…  Continue Reading...

27 May 2021

Just as occupancy is rising in office buildings, the waste industry, like the restaurant industry, is dealing with hiring challenges.  As a result, we are seeing services being delayed across the country as haulers struggle to expand routes and provide…  Continue Reading...

5 May 2021

We are proud to announce that Great Forest. Inc. has been TRUE certified to the Gold level for our Zero Waste efforts, with a diversion rate of 91.3%! (Read the Great Forest Zero Waste Case Study) This GBCI (Green Business…  Continue Reading...

5 May 2021

You may already know how much waste your facility generates and how much is being diverted from landfill. That is crucial waste data you need. But now what? Is your building in legal compliance? How do you bring your program…  Continue Reading...

9 Apr 2021

Great Forest has joined the EPA’s WasteWise program as an active participant. WasteWise encourages organizations and businesses to achieve sustainability in their practices and reduce waste. It is part of EPA’s sustainable materials management efforts. As a participant, Great Forest…  Continue Reading...

31 Mar 2021

In November 2020, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a national goal of increasing the U.S. recycling rate to 50% by 2030. As part of this process, Great Forest submitted comments to the EPA on recycling rate measurement methodology, drawing…  Continue Reading...

29 Mar 2021

THANK YOU to the 100+ people who spent part of their Earth Day with us at our webinar and Q&A. We learned so much together about how COVID-19 has impacted your waste management programs and policies, and what your successes…  Continue Reading...

5 Mar 2021

By now, many Great Forest clients would have received their annual waste report with data and details about their sustainable waste management performance over the past year. Here are 3 things every business should look out for in their reports,…  Continue Reading...

27 Jan 2021

What does the future hold? If you have a plan, you can conquer whatever comes your way. Here’s a checklist to help you achieve all your 2021 sustainable waste management goals. #1 Study Your Data Look at your data from…  Continue Reading...

25 Nov 2020

Click here to calculate your GHG from waste now Did you know: Landfill and waste services are leading contributors to GHG emissions?  Waste is the next BIG frontier in fighting carbon emissions, but many property managers and building owners are missing this significant opportunity to…  Continue Reading...

25 Nov 2020

Once a building empties out for the night, cleaning staff move in to begin their work transporting waste to central collection points. Many people do not see cleaning staff at work but what they do is essential. Because cleaning staff are often…  Continue Reading...

16 Sep 2020

How to  succeed in recycling? It’s not rocket science. Instead, it is a tried and tested proven strategy. Businesses can reduce waste, improve their diversion, and ensure their waste program functions effectively by following these 3 steps. Try it. #1…  Continue Reading...

25 Aug 2020

Great Forest has returned to performing comprehensive waste audits by planning carefully and safely. Our first waste audit since March, and the first of the COVID-19 era, was conducted in July at the Folsom Corporate Center in Northern California, supporting…  Continue Reading...

5 Aug 2020

Even though much of the way we do business has changed since the onset of COVID-19, our zero waste and sustainability goals have not changed. No matter what business you’re in, here’s what you should continue to focus on, and…  Continue Reading...

29 Jul 2020

Construction, demolition and renovation projects are resuming around the country, and so is the flow of C&D waste (construction and demolition waste). With many commercial office spaces still under capacity and regular business operations restricted, C&D waste may currently be a businesses’…  Continue Reading...

24 Jun 2020

“Every business that is reopening should conduct a waste audit to determine how their waste has changed, not only in the type of materials being collected, but also how they are being discarded. Workers have been away for some time…  Continue Reading...

17 Jun 2020

Download the FMJ article In its latest issue, FMJ magazine worked with Great Forest to offer a deep dive into waste audits. The report, Getting to the Bottom of Waste,  uses data and case studies pulled from hundreds of Great Forest waste audit investigations conducted…  Continue Reading...

17 Jun 2020

After delays, New York State’s Bag Waste Reduction Law is now being enforced.  Violations will be met with civil penalties imposed under New York State law. Any  retailer that is required to collect New York State sales tax will no longer…  Continue Reading...

20 May 2020

While recycling has slowed down during this COVID-19 health crisis, it is actually more integral than ever as many supply chains across the country depend on recycled materials. Toilet paper manufacturers, for example, rely on a supply of recycled office paper. This…  Continue Reading...

13 May 2020

As businesses reopen or prepare to reopen offices, buildings, and retail outlets, they need to also prepare to address the influx of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) waste and plan for safe PPE disposal. By now, many of you would have seen photos of…  Continue Reading...

22 Apr 2020

Updated March 2022 In 1970, 20 million people took to the streets for the very first Earth Day. Today, over 50 years later, the earth still needs our support, perhaps even more than ever.  We have less time to deal…  Continue Reading...

13 Apr 2020

THANK YOU for joining us for our Earth Action Day webinar on April 24, 2020, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day, and to learn how to take climate action at home, even as we quarantine to beat COVID-19.…  Continue Reading...

1 Apr 2020

CHALLENGES Businesses everywhere are adjusting to the ongoing crisis. The challenge to managing waste during coronavirus is to maintain gains made in waste reduction, diversion and sustainability, while taking advantage of opportunities. If this is done right, businesses will prevent a backward…  Continue Reading...

23 Mar 2020

As we all grapple with the new reality brought on by the covid-19 pandemic, we pledge to be here to help you adjust to the new challenges we all face — as individuals, communities, and businesses. We will get through…  Continue Reading...

17 Feb 2020

Plastic Bag Bans Starting March 1, 2020, New York State’s ban on single-use plastic bags goes into effect. To date, eight states have such a ban. New York joins California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Oregon and Vermont. In addition to…  Continue Reading...

22 Jan 2020

As we enter a new year and decade, it may be time to ask if your corporate values align with people and the planet. The landscape for doing business is changing and corporate culture is just beginning to catch up.…  Continue Reading...

4 Dec 2019

Need help planning a Zero Waste event? This guide will put you on the right path in just 10 simple steps. Use this checklist to help you plan large or small events, including office parties, conferences, meetings, galas, or even…  Continue Reading...

27 Nov 2019

This article originally appeared in QSR magazine, Nov. 2019. With the holiday season fast approaching, businesses, especially restaurants, will likely begin experiencing more food waste. Did you know the largest component of most commercial waste streams is organics? A large…  Continue Reading...

6 Nov 2019

This article originally appeared in the NYSAR3 Fall 2019 Newsletter. Have you looked in your trash lately? Understanding what is in your waste stream is key to helping you reduce, reuse and recycle effectively. A waste audit may reveal some surprises.…  Continue Reading...

6 Nov 2019

Photo: Dan Gold, Unsplash Client: A fast casual national chain with locations across the country. Summary: Great Forest conducted food waste audits at 3 locations of a national restaurant chain, revealing that the chain could rescue an average of 26.7% of…  Continue Reading...

30 Oct 2019

When the trick and treating is all done, what you have left are mountains of candy wrappers, decorations, costumes, and food. Around 600 million pounds of candy are bought for Halloween, and about 12,500 tons of Halloween costumes are sent to…  Continue Reading...

25 Sep 2019

Have you received your Waste and Recycling Scorecard? Wondering how to read it, and use it to help you achieve your goals? Here are some answers: What is the Waste and Recycling Scorecard? Your Great Forest Waste and Recycling Scorecard gives…  Continue Reading...

18 Sep 2019

This year’s Waste Expo included a terrific discussion on the importance of data, featuring Great Forest’s director of national accounts Joe Romuno and three other industry colleagues (shout out to Chris Ronson, Re-TRAC; Steve Steven, Rehrig Pacific; and Emily Covan, Recyclist.) If you missed…  Continue Reading...

4 Sep 2019

The start (or end) of another academic year is the perfect time for schools, colleges and universities to think about setting up a Zero Waste campus. According to Dump and Run, Inc., the average college student produces 640 pounds of…  Continue Reading...

28 Aug 2019

Going Zero Waste does not mean that you have to stop producing waste immediately. Many businesses achieve their Zero Waste goals by adopting a series of small steps that steadily reduce waste. Here’s an example. “The Ritz-Carlton in San Francisco…  Continue Reading...

6 Aug 2019

The record heat this summer (and for many summers to come) mean higher energy costs for most businesses. Here is what you can do to control and lower your energy costs, while still beating the heat. Shield the sun: Shield…  Continue Reading...

31 Jul 2019

A lack of clarity about what Zero Waste really means may be keeping some businesses from reaping its benefits. So let’s dispel the misconceptions. What Is Zero Waste?  Exact definitions may vary, but to put it simply, Zero Waste is:…  Continue Reading...

21 Jun 2019

By now most of you will have heard of the Climate Mobilization Act (CMA), signed in May 2019 in NYC, also known as Intro 1253 or Local Law 97 of 2019. While NYC is one of the first cities in the world…  Continue Reading...

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