Businesses help city meet recycling goals
Dublin, Ohio, has reached its goal of enrolling 100 companies in the city’s commercial waste reduction program, GreenWi$e. Designed by local officials, the program aims to help meet Ohio’s goal of reducing commercial solid waste by 50 percent by the year 2000.
Based on the EPA’s WasteWi$e program, GreenWi$e provides interested Dublin companies with information on waste reduction. The program emphasizes three methods for waste reduction: waste prevention (choosing double-sided paper, e-mail, etc.); recycling; and “green” purchasing.
Implemented in the summer of 1997, the program has expanded Dublin’s residential waste reduction education into the business community. While up to 40 percent of residential waste was diverted from landfills, an estimated 40 percent of the total waste came from commercial sources, notes Dana McDaniel, Dublin’s service director. “We always felt more could be done in the commercial sector,” he says.
GreenWi$e materials publicly acknowledge businesses reporting waste reduction. For example, press releases recognize the self-reported savings of companies such as Crown Motor, which saved 22,500 sheets of paper per year by focusing on waste reduction techniques, such as double-sided printing.
The program also informs local businesses of available waste reduction services. For example, GreenWi$e helped publicize the Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio’s small business recycling collection program. The regional authority now provides recycling pickup for 68 of the 100 GreenWi$e participants. Contact information for nonprofit organizations; federal, state and local resources; and grant sources are included in GreenWi$e materials.
Approximately a dozen of the participating companies have more than 100 employees, according to McDaniel; the rest are small- to medium-sized companies, including architectural firms, doctors’ offices and financial service providers.
The Ohio EPA Environmental Education Fund provided money for GreenWi$e through April 1999. Initial setup included auditing local businesses, creating an information packet and a newsletter, and visiting companies to promote the program. The city now pays for the educational materials, and a city intern distributes information and produces the newsletter. For more information on GreenWi$e, contact the Dublin Department of Service, (614) 761-6570; or visit the city’s web site at www. dublin.oh.us.