It’s no surprise that the environmentally friendly city of Stockholm has become a game-changer in the world of recycling. According to research, Sweden has less than 1% of its trash going to landfills in an effort to reduce its environmental impact. Its move to effective recycling has spurred up an opportunity for countries to send their trash to the super-efficient nation. But what makes Stockholm and the rest of Sweden so effective at managing their trash? The answer could lie in the way they see it.
European Countries Benefit From The Trash Revolution
Apart from the obvious benefit to the environment, one of the positive outcomes of the Swedish trash revolution is that other European countries also benefit from it. It’s estimated that the country imports around 2 trillion tons of trash from surrounding countries in an effort to bring the overall European carbon footprint down. While there are still emissions present during the entire recycling process, it is a far cry from the emissions caused by filling up landfills.
Stockholm Initiates A Behaviour Lab
While recycling is at the forefront of taking some of the strain off the environment in terms of creating aEuropean Countries, Stockholm’s Beteendelabbet is a behaviour lab that specializes in sustainable living. This means instilling values into families that don’t just have a recycling mindset, but also one that focuses on creating patterns and new behavioural cycles that will reduce single-use products, automatically choose environmentally-friendly products, and stop behaviours that are damaging to the planet. Incentivising people to deal with their waste more efficiently is a good method to change overall behaviour.
Trash Is Useful
Part of the reason Sweden is so efficient at dealing with their waste is that they put their waste to good use. Waste management is incorporated into the operations of the city, and biofuel is just one way the waste is repurposed. The energy content of the waste is a critical component of using it as efficiently as possible and while some are used to fuel vehicles, others make their way to warming houses. Trash is not considered trash in Sweden, but rather an energy source that can be put to good use. The entire process is designed with the environment in mind, with even air filters repurposed for other uses.
For Swedes, a new mindset for how their trash is used makes all the difference in terms of what ends up in their landfills. While mass-adoption of this model might not work everywhere, it acts as inspiration for cities and nations who want to be more sustainable.