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The Eight Steps to Reduce Waste - Step 1


Reducing waste is a major concern formany workplaces.  Because of these concerns, over the next few weeks we will take you through eight steps you can try to help reduce the waste that your workplace creates..


The first step we will cover in this article, is "Conducting A Waste Audit." We will take you through what a waste audit is, how you can benefit from conducting a waste audit and we'll also give you some tips as to how to conduct a waste audit yourself. If you'd would like help with a waste audit you can  contact Panada Environmental today!


"Your quality of service is excellent, and at a good price. I've seen your driver get out of his truck and pick up a bit of garbage that has fallen on the ground... twice! I have never seen another company's driver do that. I appreciate him taking the time to do that for me. I have recommended your company to 2 different places now and I will continue to do so in the future." 

- Peter on Panda Environmental


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What is a waste audit?


A waste audit is a formal, structured process used to quantify/gather the amount and types of wastes that are generated by an organization. The information gathered from the audit will help identify current waste practices and how they can be improved.


There is no one particular way to perform a waste audit, so generally you have a lot of freedom on what areas to focus on.


What is the purpose of a waste audit?


While a waste audit's underlying purpose is to both reduce the waste produced and help to make the waste management system more cost effective, there are a few more specific reasons to conduct a waste audit. Here are some of the reasons you may want to perform a waste audit:

  • To help determine how much waste is being generated by your business
  • To help measure how effectively your current waste management system is performing
  • To give insight as to what areas of your waste management system may need improvement
  • To help determine how much waste is needlessly being sent to landfills
  • To collect a baseline data for measuring the effectiveness of your strategies

These are some of the basic purposes of a waste audit, but every company is different and presents different needs. One thing is for certain, however, a waste audit is always beneficial to a company, and presents a level of professionalism and organization as well.


How to perform a waste audit


Waste audits are different for almost every business. Depending on the size and industry of your company, you may want to hire a waste management corporation to perform your audit, rather than attempting to do it on your own. If you decide to perform your own waste audit, you'll find out quickly that the quality of the audit depends on you and your attention to detail.


You'll want to start by observing all of the gathering systems you currently have in place. Are you separating your recycling from regular waste?  Take some time to look through the waste you've accumulated in your waste bins and dumpsters. Ensure that you are properly protected from potential hazards by wearing gloves and safety glasses, if you're venturing outside, wearing a safety vest. Some questions suggested by the Waste Reduction Week committee include, what kind of waste do we produce? How much of it do we produce? Is some of this waste easily recyclable? Is some of this waste compostable? Are some of these items reusable? Is any of this waste hazardous?



The more in depth you are with your audit, the more reliable the results will be. Be sure to be as specific as possible with your notes.

These notes will be of great assistance when trying to come up with diversion tactics in the future.



If you would like for a more thorough waste audit to be completed we would suggest you inquire into the services of a waste management company. Panda Environmental is able to do a full waste audit for you that complies with Ontario regulations 103/94, and 102/94. To view more about their waste audit services or any of their consulting services, click here now.


Be sure to check back every week for the next installment of our 8 part series on how to reduce waste.



The 8 Steps To Reduce Waste:

1. Step 1 - Conducting A Waste Assessment

2. Step 2 - Creating A Waste Reduction Plan

3. Step 3 - Reducing In The Workplace

4. Step 4 - Reusing In The Workplace

5. Step 5 - Recycling In The Workplace

6. Step 6 - Sustainable Purchasing

7. Step 7 - Energy Efficiency

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