In 2020, Zero Waste Europe will be presenting both a Zero Waste Cities Certification and a Zero Waste Label for local businesses and events committed to move towards zero waste.
The term zero waste is increasingly being used and applied across the world today. From cities to hotels and festivals, zero waste as a concept is becoming an ever more commonplace due to the growing awareness that we need to change our economic model towards one that is more circular. This growing popularity has also resulted in its definition and approach becoming diluted.
Increasingly, stakeholders in societies, ranging from municipalities to businesses, are claiming that they or their business are zero waste when there are no common standards to apply. Together with the need to ensure that the holistic, community-led approach that the zero waste philosophy is driven by, as well as in order to provide guidance and coherence to the numerous zero waste initiatives taking place, Zero Waste Europe and its member organisations have decided to design a certification system for Zero Waste Cities based on the 10 years of experience it has in the field with its European members.
Certification will be given only to municipalities who have committed to take meaningful steps towards becoming zero waste, becoming the leading zero waste standard certifying cities and municipalities in Europe.
Not only will we certify zero waste municipalities, but we will also implement a recognition programme for a broader range of initiatives and institutions who have committed to becoming zero waste. Hotels, events, schools and businesses will be able to receive a zero waste label by undertaking a number of waste reduction and prevention measures.
We are currently in the process of developing a robust framework and structure for the certification, which will be ready to be implemented across Europe in the second half of 2020. The zero waste certification will provide citizens, businesses and municipalities with clarity on who is committed to becoming truly zero waste, and also act as a tool for facilitating the further growth of zero waste across Europe.