What are the benefits of waste prevention?


It is widely known that humans produce about 1.3 billion tons of waste annually. That means the amount of garbage that we create is 75% more than the combined weight of each person in the world today. What is problematic about this fact is that over 60% of the trash will eventually make its way to a landfill. Waste prevention focuses on reducing the amount of waste that people generate at source.  It involves looking at manufacturing, processing, packaging, storage, recycling and disposal processes to identify opportunities to manage waste and minimise its impact on the environment.

In general, benefits of waste prevention include:

  • On-going cost savings
  • Identify costly environmental hotspots
  • Increased resource efficiency
  • Conserving energy and resources by reducing demands on finite natural resources
  • Making production processes more efficient
  • Improved environmental credentials
  • Additional marketing tool which can be used when bidding for new tenders/new customer
  • Reducing pollution (minimise greenhouse gas emissions)
  • Decreasing the demand of landfill space
  • Help meet national policy drivers
  • Encourage social inclusion and economic development (e.g creating jobs)

Especially, benefits could be economic, social and environmental, read here.

Every business generates waste. For some, it may be only waste paper or dirty water; for others, it may be hazardous or toxic wastes that require special handling and disposal. Whatever the type or volume of waste a company generates, it is all the same in one respect – it is costing money! In fact, a business is paying for it twice – once when they buy it and the second time when they throw it away. The bottom line is that preventing waste will save money. Click here to read a guide for waste prevention for small businesses.

In this site someone can read tips for waste prevention practices (at work, at home, at schools)






The views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union, the participating countries and the Managing Authority.