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All about the Zero Waste Certificate

The Zero Waste certificate is a certification that directly influences the circular economy.

The need to promote sustainability and recycling for the care of the environment is leading companies to comply with the different environmental requirements.

Within this circular economy model, the aim is to maximise waste prevention and recovery, and one of its main actions is that companies can obtain Zero Waste certification, promoted by the OECD, UNEP, G20, European Union, PEMAR and the Spanish State.

What is the Zero Waste Certificate?

This certification recognises companies that work and manage to recover the different fractions of waste they generate in order to prevent them from being disposed of in landfills.

Thus, these companies promote correct waste management in which they encourage the responsible, sustainable and efficient use of their resources, incorporating the resulting waste into their production system.

AENOR is responsible for issuing the Zero Waste Certificate to all those companies that comply with the regulations and requirements.

How to obtain Zero Waste Certification

To obtain it, the main steps to be followed are as follows:

  1. Carry out a correct inventory. This must quantify the waste, its origin, the storage system that is being applied and the different destinations that are applied to it.
  2. Control and improve traceability, maintaining close contact with authorised transporters and managers, improving routes, carrying out an optimal follow-up, verifying treatment methods, etc.
  3. Drawing up a feasible minimisation plan in which specific actions such as water reuse, energy optimisation, waste reduction, etc. are determined.
  4. And finally, develop a management strategy in which all the guidelines required by Spanish and European laws, regulations and orders are established.

Which companies are awarded the certification

The AENOR zero waste certificate is awarded to companies that recover more than 90% of their waste. It is important to clarify that having this seal does not mean the non-generation of waste, but rather an organised management that makes it possible to reduce its generation, prepare it for reuse or transform it into new raw materials to reintroduce it into the value chain.

There is also the “Towards zero waste” certificate for companies that recover between 60 and 90%, developed by AENOR. In this way, companies can gradually move closer to “zero waste” as they obtain the appropriate means to do so.

Benefits of the certificate

The certification is valid for three years with follow-up audits and provides numerous advantages to the organisations that obtain it.

  • The certificate gives an image of a company committed to the environment.
  • It is compatible with Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) projects.
  • By reducing waste management, it also reduces the costs associated with these processes.
  • It makes it possible to anticipate the legal provisions that will be enacted in the field of the environment, specifically waste management.
  • Income is obtained from the management of recoverable materials instead of being managed as waste.

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