A. Zero Waste. Zero waste means establishing a system in which waste is minimized, and each discard becomes a useful feedstock for other processes in the ecology and economy. Zero waste practices include but are not limited to reducing the waste generated in ordinary commerce, promoting use of sustainable, non-toxic materials and processes in manufacturing, purchasing recycled content materials and establishing systems for collection and processing of discards to promote sustainable use.
C. Highest and Best Use. Recovering materials for "highest and best use" means to realize the highest value of the embodied energy and materials from discarded products and packaging, according to the following hierarchy:
(a) Reuse of the product for its original purpose.
(b) Reuse of the product for an alternate purpose.
(c) Reuse of its parts.
(d) Reuse of the materials.
(a) Recycling of inorganic materials in closed loop systems.
(b) Recycling of inorganic materials in single-use applications.
(c) Composting or mulching of organic materials to sustain soils and avoid use of chemical fertilizers.
(d) Composting or mulching of organic materials to reduce erosion and litter, and to retain moisture.
Determination of highest and best use requires an ongoing re-evaluation of commodity value in the marketplace, cost of collection, processing and marketing; and other outside factors that may bear on the ultimate economic return. The determination of highest and best use includes consideration of the full range of costs including environmental and health aspects.