The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines the concept of waste minimization as follows: the use of source reduction and/or environmentally sound recycling methods prior to energy recovery, treatment, or disposal of wastes.
This paper from Waste Management’s Insight Section called “Manufacturing & Industrial” Waste Minimization” contains a wealth of information on the subject. Because the Intercept Technology packaging material influences many industries and processes, we at Liberty Packaging are required to have knowledge in many areas. Water and water vapor mitigation, corrosion protection, electro-static discharge, insect nesting, mold and mildew, worldwide atmospheres, materials cleanliness, and general packaging concepts are just some of the matters that concern our customers, in addition to waste minimization and reduction.
Below is a list of points extracted from the Waste Management paper where Intercept Technology Packaging can help:
- create strategies aiming to prevent waste through upstream interventions,
- create strategies focusing on optimizing resource and energy use,
- create strategies for lowering toxicity levels during manufacture,
- create strategies to minimize waste and thus improve resource efficiency,
- create strategies to improve product design,
- attain a cleaner production process and manufacturing floor,
- allow for reuse of scrap material,
- improve quality control,
- strengthen customer and employee awareness towards the environment,
- prompt environmentally conscious consumption patterns,
- reduce the overall levels of waste generation,
- avoid the creation of waste rather than focusing on the management of residuals after they are generated,
- ensure that purchased materials arrive in minimal packaging or reusable packaging to avoid disposal costs,
- attain savings with the reduction of packaging materials,
- minimize the amount of other materials used and to maximize the amount of recyclable or degradable packaging content,
- minimize the toxicity of a process along with the potential for releases to the environment,
- minimize the generation of hazardous wastes,
- reduce waste volumes and toxicities along with energy and other resources,
- decrease the volumes of wastewater and wastewater sludge which helps to conserve natural resources and reduces the potential for environmental contamination,
- optimize diversion through comprehensive reuse or recycling programs to avoid disposal costs, minimize waste and avoid unnecessary purchases of additional raw materials,
- Improved housekeeping practices to ensure that raw materials are used efficiently,
- prevent material loss due to spills, evaporation or volatilization,
- avoid processes that cause hazardous waste to be inefficiently mixed with non-hazardous waste,
- minimize the amount of hazardous waste that must be stored, treated and disposed of,
- reduce the hidden costs associated with hazardous materials management.
Some of the points may seem redundant but under strong consideration, not necessarily. There are many subtle facets to each segment. Like Intercept itself, where there are many facets to it that can help a company achieve Waste Minimization; just ask us.
More about corrosion in this video:
And about Intercept Technology™ in this one:
Intercept Technology Packaging products fit within a sustainability strategy because they are reusable, recyclable, do not contain or use volatile components (No VOCs, Not a VCI) and leave a smaller carbon footprint than most traditional protective packaging products.