Reduce waste generation and disposal through public education and internal training programs.
Implement an Internal Training Program
- Conduct municipal staff training programs on waste prevention.
- Training programs to teach EPP (environmentally preferable products) requirements guidelines in municipal procurement.
- Develop and/or develop procurement collaboratives to share guidelines for EPP with procurement departments of various departments or other institutions, such as local school districts, as well as retail establishments.
- In the case that a city/county does not have the capacity to create these programs, partner with a product stewardship organizations, such as PSI or NSAC for support.
Implement a Public Education Program
Develop education and/or information programs on source reduction, reuse, and proper materials disposal. Information should be accessible to at least 80% of the customers in the municipality.
The educational components should include the following:
- A website and physical materials, e.g. calendars & refrigerator magnets, that are regularly distributed and posted in public areas.
- At minimum, offer an annual tour of the waste management facility operations open to the public
Information on how to reduce material consumption and channels for reuse of materials:
- Current list of materials accepted for curbside collection (link to another credit later on).
- Current list of materials not accepted for curbside collection.
- Drop-off locations for materials not accepted curbside.
- Information on household hazardous waste.
- Calendar (physical or virtual) of waste-related events.
- Educational activities and information designed for educating children, residents, and businesses.
- In the case that a city/county does not have the capacity/ability to create these materials, Partner with Environmental Education groups such as the state’s Recycling Organization or Department for Environmental Quality; or other nonprofits.
- Promote education programs that encourage, announce, and remind residents to utilize waste reduction infrastructure and events such as ‘tool libraries’, ‘repair cafes’, and corporate-sponsored programs (e.g. Patagonia repair bus), etc.
- Offer educational programs to the public on reducing consumption and reusing products.
- Offer regular educational programs relating to waste management operations (learning centers, programs designed by educators in the field, speakers offered to local schools)
- Citizen education programs to eliminate or reduce usage of products, e.g. bag bans or taxes/promotion or distribution of reusable bags; water bottle refilling stations in public places.
- Education programs on Food waste Prevention & reuse geared toward children, families and businesses.
- Public information on existing partnerships/programs with companies that handle hard-to-recycle items (e.g. Best Buy’s TVs recycling programs, Terracycle, etc.)