It seems like all automaker's tout their zero-waste scheme, right? But is zero-waste all that it's cracked up to be?
Take, for example, Honda. In mid-July, Honda announced that ten of its 14 facilities in North America achieved zero-waste-to-landfill status. An accomplishment worthy of mention, right? Well, maybe not.
According to BioCycle magazine columnist, Eric Lombardi, the phrase 'zero-waste-to-landfills' is often assumed to mean, well, zero waste. Problem is, zero waste doesn't equal zero-waste-to-landfills. Lombardi claims:
The problem with having a singular focus on the landfill implies that making energy from waste by burning it is acceptable. Waste-to-energy is a disposal technology that destroys resources forever; it makes things 'go away,' and doesn't reduce waste or protect natural resources.
It is a good thing when automakers try to clean up their entire supply chain, but Lombardi argues that some automakers might be touting zero-waste-to-landfill even as they burn half their discards. This, according to Lombardi, is nothing more than greenwashing at its best. Scratch that. At its worst.
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