“Zero waste” is a buzzy concept that can be applied to almost anything. With a few shopping tweaks, you can have a zero waste beauty routine, or strive towards a zero waste kitchen. But can an entire city become zero waste?
Missoula thinks it can. On August 1, the city council adopted into committee a “Zero by Fifty” program that’s been gestating since 2016. The ambitious plan aims to eliminate 90 percent of the city’s wastestream by 2050, thereby meeting the Zero Waste International Alliance definition of zero waste.
“We understand that the goal is aspirational, and that is on purpose,” Chase Jones, the energy conservation and climate action coordinator for Missoula, says in an interview with Green Matters. “Without a bold intention and bold goals, it’s even harder to move the needle. It really puts us in a position to get working right away.”