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Recycling made easy: The Zero Waste Lab helps to make recycling accessible and rewarding

2 min read

Better Society
Recycling made easy: The Zero Waste Lab helps to make recycling accessible and rewarding
Source: BrightVibes

The Amsterdam-based Zero Waste Lab offers coins in return for full bags of separated waste.

The Zero Waste Lab

The Zero Waste Lab makes recycling easy, fun and rewarding. The initiative aims to create a circular economy, one neighborhoor at a time.

The Zero Waste Lab An initiative to promote recycling and waste separation by making it easy and rewarding. Source: Facebook Brightvibes

The Goal

The Zero Waste Lab opened its doors in Amsterdam, late 2016. The Dutch national percentage of waste seperation is 51% while the capitol’s percentage is a mere 27%. The Zero Waste Lab wants to increase this percentage to 65% before 2020 by making waste separation and recycling easier and more approachable.

Besides the recycling of trash, the Zero Waste Lab also contains a social aspect, as locals are encouraged to drop by and to spend their coins at local businesses.

In the Zero Waste Lab, separated waste is collected so the resources from the waste can be re-used and upcycled.
Zero Waste Lab In the Zero Waste Lab, separated waste is collected so the resources from the waste can be re-used and upcycled. Source: None

The Method

Resources are scarce and they’re becoming scarcer by the day. Fortunately, there’s a lot of resources in the stuff we’ve already used: in our waste! By separating and recycling that waste, we can re-use those resources instead of having to tap into new ones. By using waste as a source of resources, we’re moving towards a circular economy.

The Zero Waste Lab works with a simple three step method: recycling made easy.

  1. Collect your separated waste. When you drop by at the Zero Waste Lab, you get jute sacks in which you can collect your separated garbage.
  2. Hand in your separated waste and collect your coins. In return for full bags of waste, you get coins. The amount of coins depends on the type of waste.
  3. Redeem your coins at local businesses. You can hand in your coins at over 70 business in exchange for discounts and such.

 

The Zero Waste Lab offers more than just coins; people can drop off their waste and drop by for a cup of coffee.
A social environment The Zero Waste Lab offers more than just coins; people can drop off their waste and drop by for a cup of coffee. Source: None

The Biking Bin

In an effort to collect even more waste and to make recycling and waste separating even more accessible and easy, the biking bin rides around to collect waste. The Biking Bin has different bins to collect separated waste.

People without a job or with difficulties, can ride around on the Biking Bin to collect waste, to fill their day with a meaningful activity, that gives them a sense of purpose and meaning.

The Biking Bin in action Source: None
Make an Impact

Individually, we can make a difference as well

Don't despair because there's no Zero Waste Lab in your neighborhood. You can contribute to the Circulair Economy by trying (a couple of) these zero waste tips.