Sustainable waste in cities: View over River Thames showing London landscape

How to Achieve Sustainable Waste in Cities.

Sustainable waste in cities can only be achieved with effective sustainable waste management. This is why we at RJS Waste Management pledged our Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) back in 2021.

Here, we look at the UN Environmental Programme’s (UNEP) strategies for sustainable waste management and let you know how you too can embrace SDGs in your education programmes and company ethos.

UNEP advice on sustainable waste in cities

According to the UNEP, when considering sustainable waste management in cities:

  • It’s important to address the per capita environmental impact of cities, with a focus on air quality and municipal waste management.
  • Operational excellence and sustainable financing are essential for long-term success.
  • It’s an environmental necessity, as well as an economic opportunity, contributing significantly to urban sustainability and the achievement of SDGs.

The UNEP also offers great advice on how to achieve sustainable waste management in cities:

  • Waste reduction initiatives —Encourage practices like home composting and embracing zero-waste refill services to reduce waste needing collection.
  • Knowledge-sharing and data utilisation —Engage in initiatives that share knowledge and improve waste data collection, contributing to shaping national waste strategies and circular economy roadmaps in line with SDGs.
  • Stepwise improvement and investor attraction —Gradually enhance waste management systems, leveraging progress to attract investors. Explore various financing mechanisms, including co-financing and support from businesses and importers, all aligning with SDGs.

Grenada has smashed its sustainable waste in cities target to achieve sustainable waste management across the country. They’ve introduced fees payable for everything from higher electricity consumption to importing plastic bottles.

It would be fantastic to see these results, as well as more sustainable construction, in UK cities like Chichester, Birmingham and Oxford — even London

Read more in the UNEP’s Towards Zero Waste -A Catalyst for Delivering the Sustainable Development Goals.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

SDG Teach-In

The SDG Teach In is designed to bring SDGs and sustainability to the heart of education, including workplace learning providers. The campaign, which happens each March, encourages educators to include the SDGs (shown above) in their teaching, training, learning and assessments. It aims to:

  • Raise awareness of the importance of sustainable development
  • Catalyse curriculum reform and test new ideas
  • Embed sustainability across all training and learning
  • Link training, teaching, learning, and assessment to local and global concerns
  • Prepare everyone with the knowledge, skills, and attributes to tackle the world’s greatest challenges

The campaign’s main achievements include:

March 2023 — Over 1284 educators pledged to include the SDGs in their education across 23 countries, reaching over 121,000 learners.

Since 2018 — The campaign has reached nearly 370,000 learners across a broad range of disciplines.

Find out how you could include SDGs in your training programmes to achieve a more sustainable workplace and help promote sustainable waste in cities, by listening to the 2024 SDG Teach In – Get Started, Go Further Webinar.

RJS SDGs for sustainable waste in cities

Since 2021, RJS Waste Management’s SDGs have aligned with the company’s daily activities:

  • SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 13: Climate Change
  • SDG 14: Life Below Water
  • SDG 15: Life On Land

As a paperless office that strictly follows the waste hierarchy for waste disposal,  and with the introduction of electric cars to our growing fleet, we’re on a positive path.

With offices in West Sussex, Oxfordshire and London, we’re here to help achieve sustainable waste in cities across the UK. Get in touch for a WEEE recycling or hazardous waste removal quote and let us help you.