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What is Waste Production Prevention?
Prevention is at the top of the European waste management hierarchy, and it is divided in two categories: quantitative prevention (the reduction of the amount of waste) and qualitative prevention (reduction of its hazardous content). Prevention includes reduction and reuse and aims to prevent waste production. Prevention allows a reduction of production, treatment and disposal costs, natural resource consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.
As Prevention is the basis of Waste Management, LIPOR has incorporated in its integrated waste management three fundamental aspects: the changing of processes in order to eliminate waste that results from production processes; the decrease of waste production at its source, by changing mentalities, and the reuse of products as a cost-saving measure.
Waste prevention means reducing the amount of waste at its source; for instance, when you are shopping, you should choose products with less packaging and you should only buy products you actually need, thus preventing waste production and saving money.
On the other hand, you can also prevent waste production after you buy the product, by giving materials a new life, i. e., reusing them.
Thus, the best waste is that which doesn't become waste!
Waste Prevention can be defined as a group of measures taken in order to avoid that a substance, material or product becomes waste. These measures aim to reduce:
The amount of waste produced by reusing and extending the products' service life;
The harmful impact of waste production and treatment on the environment and human health;
The hazardous content of materials and products.
How to prevent?