Download the Zero Waste symbol
Unlike the universal recycling logo, that has an international recognition, there are a lot of different versions used to symbolize the Zero Waste movement. This is the reason that for the launch of our new website, Recycling.com in july 2016, we decided to make our own unique interpretation.
What is Zero Waste?
Zero Waste is a philosophy that encourages the redesign of resource life cycles so that all products are reused.
Our version of the Zero Waste symbol or logo is free to use. You can download the zero waste logo below in different file formats.
Download Zero Waste Symbol
Background of our Zero Waste logo
From the four elements the Zero Waste movement wants to eliminate fire (incineration) and earth (landfill). The Rainbow is the symbol for the two remaining elements water and light.
The Rainbow seems linear but is in fact circular (source: Wikipedia), depending on our point of view. We also have to change our point of view going from a linear end-to-end to a full circular economy. The pot of gold of landfill is not the end of the rainbow but the real pot is inside and is clean water supported by a circular recycling based economy.
Video: Can you reach the end of a rainbow?
- Duration: 3:45
- Video source
As seen in our Zero Waste Logo, the recycling symbol is in the core or negative space of the rainbow and is in the violet colour. We usually look as humans from the outside in but we have to change our view from the inside out. An average human adult male consists for an average 69% (source: Wikipedia) of water and we are refreshing ourselves with an average 1 – 3 liters of drinking water a day (source: Wikipedia). Clean water is vital for our future.
The prisms that reflect the sun in the water mark the horizon we have as the moving goal or ideal of the Zero Waste movement. We have to rethink our behaviour and to look beyond our own (in time limited) horizon and take away the limits of our view.
Closing the loops and 100% recycling figures as our shooting target in the full rainbow.
Violet is the goal
The emphasis in the word Zero Waste is on the colours of the rainbow in the double o or 0. Waste is red because according to the waste hierarchy and Zero Waste movement it has to be avoided and Zero is in violet because it is the goal.
We have to become aware that by polluting our oceans further we are finally poisoning our children.
Close all the loops
We have to take care of our planet Earth and together we have to move upwards from the bottom of the waste hierarchy.
Zero Waste International Alliance
This is also the goal of the Zero Waste International Alliance. “Zero Waste is a goal that is ethical, economical, efficient and visionary, to guide people in changing their lifestyles and practices to emulate sustainable natural cycles, where all discarded materials are designed to become resources for others to use.”
Zero Waste means designing and managing products and processes to systematically avoid and eliminate the volume and toxicity of waste and materials, conserve and recover all resources, and not burn or bury them.
This is also the goal of GAIA (Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives), a worldwide alliance of more than 650 grassroots groups, non-governmental organizations, and individuals in over 90 countries whose ultimate vision is a just, toxic-free world without incineration.
Video: 2013 Goldman Environmental Prize Ceremony: acceptance speech Rossano Ercolini
Implementing Zero Waste will eliminate all discharges to land, water or air that are a threat to planetary, human, animal or plant health.” (source: Wikipedia.org)
Learn from Zero Waste at home practices
Where the recycling cycle has 3 R’s with Reduce, Reuse and Recycling most Zero Waste influencers start with the extra R of Refuse. Where composting is possible even an extra R of Rot is added. Then it becomes 5 R’s with Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Rot.
As Zero Waste is more an ideal or horizon than a target the movement provides us with principles for eliminating waste. Environmental change is needed and as consumer you can start yourself by using your buying power to speed up closing the loops.
Learn from zero waste bloggers that living in a world with sustainable jars can be very stylish. It also allows to pay fair prices to all parties involved in our food chain that usually is paid for marketing. Bringing time and money savings and health benefits. Start now and take your own responsibility and get your inspiration from these sources.
More about Zero Waste
Popular Zero Waste books
Learn how to live Zero Waste from the most successful Zero Waste authors.
Author: Amy Korst
The Zero-Waste Lifestyle: Live Well by Throwing Away Less
Author: Beth Terry
Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too
By Recycling.com/ 14 October 2019