SAN FRANCISCO — New Resource Bank diverted just over 95 percent of its waste from the landfill in July, breaking the bank’s official goal of 90 percent—and its unofficial goal of 95 percent. New Resource monitors its waste daily, providing results to iReuse, which reports the results monthly; the system is based on the EPA’s Waste Reduction Model.
How does a busy office manage to recycle, reuse or compost just about everything?
“Training,” says New Resource’s Green Team member Marielle Horan, who led the staff in beating their goal. “The goal was to instill a sense of empowerment and responsibility in staff, but I wanted to make it fun and make it easy.”
The work begin in earnest in May, when the bank set its goal. Horan first made sure all staff knew what could be recycled, reused or composted. (The bank provides sustainability training for all new hires as well.) At their desks, everyone not only has a recycling bin but also a compost container for leftovers and paper napkins. Horan made sure the office’s large recycling and composting bins had prominent labels indicating what goes where. She also added three extra bins, for reuse of styrofoam and bubblewrap, recycling soft plastics, and reusable materials for SCRAP (the Scrounger’s Center for Reuseable Art Parts, a San Francisco nonprofit).
The fun parts included a timed “speed sorting” contest, a recycling/composting competition, viewing the documentary The Story of Stuff, and a trip to the San Francisco dump, where staffers not only learned about garbage but also about the 20-year-old Artist in Residence Program in which artists make art from trash and teach people about recycling and conservation in the process.
Next week, the bank will host an installation of sculptures from the artists’ program.
“We needed to provide a broad perspective,” says Horan. “It’s about making a greater impact—it’s not just about you and your recycling bin. I want to continue to inspire people.”
About New Resource Bank
New Resource (http://www.newresourcebank.com) is the bank for people who are leading the way to a more sustainable world. We match an entrepreneurial spirit with a dedication to achieving environmental and social as well as financial returns. Our mission is to advance sustainability with everything we do—the loans we make, the way we operate and our commitment to putting deposits to work for good.
Vince Siciliano, President & CEO;