We are living in a defining point in history where we will be judged for our actions in the future. We must not just be sustainable. We must build a platform where accountability for our actions are automatic and come as second nature. The solution is to offer brands a value proposition which is hard to ignore. Since the dawn of sustainability, it has been difficult to demonstrate its economic value. The question we need to ask ourselves is:
GENERACYCLE VISION – 100% LANDFILL FREE GLOBE BY 2040
The GeneraCycle vision of a 100% landfill free globe by 2040, is a testament to its dedication to the planet and to developing solutions to prevent materials from going to landfill. While GeneraCycle believes reversing landfills is also important, GeneraCycle believes it has to start with its backyards first to ensure dependence on landfill comes to a stop. The GeneraCycle mantra, ‘start by starting’ is entirely responsible for getting us to where we are today.
When we just recycle, discarded materials typically end up in a landfill, negatively impacting the environment. When we “GeneraCycle,” materials become part of a circular economy, positively impacting the environment.
DON’T JUST RECYCLE, GENERACYCLE!
At GeneraCycle we believe recycling is simply a tool. When recycling occurs it can save money, energy and, of course, it can reduce landfill, leaving us with a cleaner planet. If we look at our modern day history, when most of our landfills were created, it will tell us that recycling alone is ineffective to answer our present day challenges.
“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein
Aluminum, for example, the grandfather of the closed loop economy, possesses properties so ‘perfect’ that it allows infinite recyclability. It is a material that is so ‘perfect’ it can be used to carry your drink one day and then move you across the Atlantic, as part of an airliner, the next. So ‘perfect’ a significant proportion of the world unquestionably knows it is recyclable. So ‘perfect’ recycling facilities exist around the globe to return it to its raw state, so ‘perfect’ the economy is built around the continuous recovery of it, through receptacles, collection programs and collection vehicles. So ‘perfect’ and so light, moving it in large amounts is safe, economical and feasible. With all of these supporting mechanisms in place, however, abysmal recycling rates continue to plague this ‘perfect’ system.
“The aluminum can is infinitely recyclable; that means it can be used, recycled, and turned back into a new can endlessly. It takes 92% less energy to make a can from recycled aluminum, than from raw materials.” – ALCOA
In the US alone over one billion dollars worth of aluminum cans are discarded. Recycling, while helpful in ensuring the recovery of materials, is still ineffective in diverting them from a landfill. Even though we intend to recycle, we still need additional support to ensure our efforts can become part of a circular economy. To ensure materials become part of a circular economy, GeneraCycle programs and awareness campaigns aid in the recovery of materials.
GeneraCycle was coined from two separate Latin words, ‘genera’ from Biology which is a “class or subdivision of groups of individuals” and ‘cycle’ from plural cyclus “a complete series of occurrences which can repeat.” To “GeneraCycle,” therefore, is to repeatedly class or subdivide groups or individuals in a complete series of occurrences. The idea of “GeneraCycling” is to catalog, identify, create processes, cleanse, sort, remanufacture, repurpose and further classify materials for their continuous recovery.
LANDFILLS ARE NOT THE SOLUTION
When has any problem been solved by burying it? Landfills are no exception. GeneraCycle believes that it has to start with real solutions and that implementing them right away is necessary to achieve success in eliminating landfills. By using this approach, by working with all parties and by dealing with the issues head on landfills will be a thing of the past.
Self-proclaimed experts say that landfills are safe and that their interior linings will protect the earth from damage. Nothing lasts forever and to say the planet will be safe from a lining breach is a fallacy. When breached, landfills will release toxins into our land, water and air (including greenhouse gases) infiltrating our bodies, which could very well affect the future security of our species.