We’ve created a jargon buster with definitions of sustainability and product stewardship terms we get asked about often. If you have more terms you think we should add, we’d love to hear from you.
The circular economy is a model of production and consumption based on three principles. Eliminating waste and pollution, keeping products and materials in use at the highest possible value for as long as possible, and regenerating natural systems. The circular economy is often used in contrast to the linear economy. Read about our work in the circular economy here.
A concept developed by University of Oxford Economist Kate Raworth, that illustrates sustainable development. It visualises a goal of societal and developmental equity which stays within the limitations of the planet’s natural resources. Where the circular economy focuses on products, doughnut economics focuses on how we share resouces.
An outcome where recovered products are turned into other products that are of a lower value, or more difficult to recover and recycle or cannot be recovered and recycled when they reach the end of their life.
A concept that assigns responsibility for waste and waste reduction to individuals, households, businesses, and government. A duty of care can be incorporated into regulation or legislation.
When a product reaches the end of its useful life and must be recycled, repurposed or otherwise disposed of.
This is another name for product stewardship, used in some places overseas. It’s when all those involved in the supply chain of a product take responsibility for eliminating or reducing the environmental impact of a product throughout its entire life cycle.
ESG stands for environmental, social and governance and is a term often used in association with investment. It is a set of criteria or a lens with which to look at business performance. Many businesses now report on their ESG performance, and many investment funds use it as screening criteria, particularly those funds or products concerned with ethical or sustainable investing.
Life cycle analysis, where the environmental impacts of a product or material are examined and measured throughout its entire life cycle, from resource extraction, use, disposal, through to its end-of-life destination.
A term often used in product stewardship, this is the measurement of how much product has been put into the market, versus how much has been recovered, and what happened to it (e.g. recycled, sent to landfill).
Materials recovery facility. This is where recovered material is sorted for recycling and other end uses. It can be a commercial operation, one owned by a local council, or run by a not-for-profit or social enterprise group. MRFs make up part of the resource recovery network.
This is a particular mechanism in New Zealand’s Waste Miminisation Act 2008. The Minister for the Environment can declare a product to be a priority product. When this happens, a product stewardship scheme must be formed for that product with mandatory participation by producers and members of the supply chain.
When producers, brand owners, retailers and consumers all play their part in taking responsibility for eliminating or reducing the environmental impact of a product throughout its life cycle. In some places this is known as EPR or extended producer responsibility. Read more about product stewardship.
A product stewardship scheme is a system that is designed to manage products throughout their entire lifecycle to reduce or eliminate their environmental impact. It usually involves members of an entire industry or supply chain. It is governed by a product stewardship organisation (PSO). The operational aspects of the scheme may be carried out by the PSO, or by an appointed scheme manager, or a mixture of both.
Product stewardship organisation. This is the name for the governance body that oversees a product stewardship scheme. Best practice is that the makeup of a product stewardship organisation should reflect the range of stakeholders a scheme has.
The resource recovery network is made up of businesses and organisations that help divert waste from landfill so that it can be reused, repaired or recycled. It includes local government, waste contractors, not-for-profit organisations, social enterprises.
The percentage of a material or product that is diverted from landfill at the end of its life for reuse and recycling. In some cases not all of the recovered material is able to be recycled. For example it may be made up of several components, some of which can be recycled and some of which can’t. Or some recovered material may be too contaminated to recycle.
The percentage of material that is diverted from landfill and recycled. This can be measured against the total amount of material to market, and against the amount of material recovered. This tells us how well we are doing at diverting material, as well as how much of that material is able to be recycled.
Regulated product stewardship is also sometimes called mandatory product stewardship. This is where government uses legislative or regulatory mechanisms to ensure producers participate in product stewardship schemes that eliminate or minimise environmental harm from their products. This is also known in some places as EPR or Extended Producer Responsibility.
The concept that products should be manufactured and managed to make them easy and economical to repair, rather than thrown away. For example, manufacturers making parts available at reasonable cost. In some places around the world this is becoming regulated.
An organisation that carries out the operational aspects of a product stewardship scheme on behalf of the product stewardship organisation.
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. A framework that countries, businesses and organisations can use to align their goals for a more economically, environmentally and socially sustainable world. You can find 3R’s reporting about our sustainable development goals on our sustainability page.
This is where businesses or industries take back their own product and/or packaging to divert it from landfill and manage its end-of-life. These schemes do not usually impact on the whole product life cycle.
Voluntary product stewardship is when industry decides to create and take part in a product stewardship system without being compelled to by government regulation or legislation. Best practice voluntary schemes have many of the same aims and characteristics of regulated or mandatory product stewardship.
An independent board that provides advice to the Minister for the Environment about waste minimisation issues.
The waste hierarchy sets out the ways of dealing with waste, from the most desirable to the least desirable. The steps in the hierarchy from most to least desirable are prevent (or avoid), reduce, reuse, recycle, recover and dispose.
A strategy set by government that helps to inform legislation, regulation and policy about waste.
Systems that convert any waste to energy. This can include processes such as incineration, biodigestion or pyrolisation of waste to create energy for a local or national grid, or as alternative fuels.
New Zealand’s current waste legislation, the Waste Minimisation Act 2008. This is currently under review.
The government’s Waste Minimisation Fund. It awards funds to organisations for initiatives that reduce waste, or boost recycling and other end-of-life solutions.
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Product stewardship is set to come into it's own following the recent Government announcement declaring no less than six priority products. But what does good product stewardship look like?Read More
Adele Rose explains why the Ministry of the Environment's recent announcement on priority products means to her.Read More
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Making a declaration of priority product signals which products the Government considers cause the most harm and therefore need to be covered by a regulated product stewardship scheme.Read More
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Our latest Sustainable Development Report looks what we do, how we do it and most importantly why we do it, with sustainability at the top of our mind.Read More
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What a difference a year makes, the National Party’s environment spokesperson, Scott Simpson, told the EDS Climate Change and Business Conference yesterday.Read More
Making the switch to electric vehicles isn’t just a ‘nice to do’ for one of New Zealand’s biggest companies, it makes good business sense too.Read More
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The back courtyard at our 3R offices has been transformed, using recycled paint for a mural.Read More
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Mention the term ‘product stewardship’ to the first person you bump into on the street and chances are you will be met with a blank look.Read More
Find out what we're doing about a recycling programme for the estimated 300,000 mattresses that go to landfill each year.Read More
Confused about alternatives to 'traditional' plastic packaging, like biodegradable, degradable and compostable options? Don't worry, help is at hand.Read More
3R Group has signed up to the Climate Leaders Coalition, joining a group of businesses dedicated to “forging a path to create a future that is low-emission, positive for our businesses and economy, and inclusive for all New Zealanders”.Read More
Major lubricant industry brands are calling on importers and distributors in the market to join them in tackling the issue of millions of lubricant packages being discarded every year.Read More
A new chemical collection service has not only seen Palmerston North residents safely dispose of over 800kg of unwanted chemicals for free, but also helped educate them around hazardous waste.Read More
Just a few years ago there weren’t many people who would think it was possible to recycle a child car seat, much less have an option to actually do so.Read More
We are really honoured have have been held up as "exemplars" of emissions reduction by Enviro-Mark Solutions.Read More
With such regular news stories about the huge issue of plastic in the ocean it’s refreshing to find a beach in Hawke’s Bay looking relatively clean.Read More
New Zealand has edged one step closer to solving its ever-mounting problem with end of life tyres.Read More
I recently had the opportunity to present on my work around recycled paint at Australia’s leading waste management industry conference, the Coffs Harbour Waste Conference.Read More
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A trial collection of car bumpers has diverted over 1 tonne of plastic from landfill in a 4-week period.Read More
3R hosted a movie night featuring the Kiwi-made documentary Living the Change, as the first Sustainable Business Network Business Connector event of the year, on April 19. We caught up with the flimmakers Antoinette Wilson and Jordan Osmond. What insRead More
Find out how 3R designed Agrecovery to provide a responsible and sustainable nationwide product stewardship solution for agricultural chemicals and their containers.Read More
The practice of sending hundreds of thousands of car bumpers to the dump may become a thing of the past in New Zealand, with work underway to start a recycling programme.Read More
Talking about and promoting the circular economy is something we are really passionate about.Read More
The Timaru District Council is among those in Canterbury leading the way with innovative child car seat recycling as four sites become available in the district for people to responsibly dispose of their unwanted seats.Read More
The Great DDT is gaining momentum as farmers turn over tonnes of their unwanted chemicals for safe disposal. The programme has so far collected some 17 tonnes of banned persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and other chemicals from properties in NorthRead More
People in Canterbury have even more options for recycling child car seats as seven new sites become available in the region. SeatSmart partnered with the Waimakariri and Hurunui district councils to introduce the new drop-off sites, which sees the toRead More
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Our SeatSmart child car seat recycling programme keeps expanding and we are really pleased to kick 2018 off with a new collection site in the North Island.Read More
The circular economy is the economy of the future, and 3R Group are proud to have joined as Foundation Partners of the newly launched Circular Economy Accelerator (CEA).Read More
Chemical collections - we decided to donate $200 for every tonne of materials collected by our ChemCollect service to a Million Metres Streams Project.Read More
The NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards 2017 were once again a great event to be involved with, and we were proud to be an Event Partner for the second year running.Read More
A case of some lucky coincidence has seen dangerous chemicals removed from the side of a state highway in Waikato after they were illegally dumped.Read More
The 3R run SeatSmart child car seat recycling programme reached an exciting milestone when we collected our 6000th seat last month.Read More
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Upcycling isn’t restricted to things you can hold in your hands – the idea can be applied to entire buildings.Read More
Our waste minimisation expert Dominic Salmon recently completed a waste assessment for the Gisborne District Council, which garnered great feedback.Read More
In order to move forward we need to start going around in circles. Such is the thinking behind a circular economy.Read More
What do you expect to find on a beach? Sand, rocks, seaweed and the smell of fresh, salty air? Sadly this isn’t always the case.Read More
The report “A Wasted Opportunity” released today by the New Zealand Waste Levy Action Group recommends broadening and raising the levy charged on all waste sent to landfill.Read More
Recycling specialists 3R Group are welcoming today’s announcement from the Minister for the Environment of $18.6 million in funding for used tyre recycling initiatives. “There is no doubt that this is a positive step forward in dealing with the mRead More
When it comes to minimising food waste we can all do our part; shop smart, only cook as much as you need and eat leftovers, among other things.Read More
Food is one of our biggest expenses, but every year we literally throw away $872 million worth.Read More
Oh My Goodness Speciality Breads - waste is something baker Scott cannot abide, plus the bread is simply too good not to use, he says.Read More
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We're pretty honoured to be featured as one of the ten, in BusinessNZ's "Leading the Way" publication.Read More
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Councils play a pivotal role in developing the Circular Economy and this article provides tips on how to fund it.Read More
The term “circular economy” has been around for quite some time now, particular in the waste and resource recovery sectors but for many it’s still a foreign concept.Read More
Find out how we helped four very different organisations assess their waste and identify how to reduce it.Read More
The latest OECD environment report cites lack of New Zealand waste data in 1996, 2006 and again in the latest report.Read More
Introducing ChemCollect! Through our previous work in chemical stewardship and collection, we know there is always a small percentage of chemicals in circulation that, for whatever reason, are not used or sold for their intended purpose. Not to mentiRead More
A recent crowdfunding initiative through the Million Metres Streams project saw $25,000 raised. This equates to 4,500 native plants and trees.Read More
A partnership with the Million Metres Streams Project successfully raised over $30,000 to plant a riparian margin at Mangarara Station.Read More
“Sustainable business” is a familiar concept to many, but what’s it like to work at the green coal-face in New Zealand?Read More
SeatSmart gives consumers a simple user-pays nationwide recycling programme for child car seats. We continue to work with industry to make SeatSmart a voluntary product stewardship programme.Read More
SBN Awards 2016 - 3R partnered with SBN, Green Shoot Pacific and The Great Catering Company to deliver a zero waste event.Read More
Catch up on our latest discussion with Kathryn Ryan on RNZ's Nine to Noon.Read More
3R Group say the focus should be on products that have no recycling options, not products with relatively high recycling rates.Read More
There is no limit to the type of product for which 3R is asked to find a recycling solution - Gallagher's Flashmate® was an unusual one.Read More
Westland Milk Products sells to some of the world’s biggest companies and they ask tricky sustainability questions - we help answer them.Read More
National Expedition and Internship is a six week programme for US undergraduates with students interned at 3R Group.Read More
3R's Chief Executive, Adele Rose, speaks to Idealog about what’s involved setting up schemes such as Rebound Mattress Recycling.Read More
With a national presence and a broad range of waste-to-resource services, 3R Group is at the forefront of enabling economic benefit from resource recovery in New Zealand.Read More
Since its inception, 3R has been committed to support our staff and local community.Read More
A article recently appeared in the Hawke's Bay Today, documenting the fascinating career of John Stace, 3R shareholder and deputy chair.Read More
When the National Aquarium of New Zealand upgraded their filter system, they turned to local experts 3R Group to recycle 40 cubic metres of obsolete plastic.Read More
3R were delighted to receive a commendation in the Auckland Council Mega Efficiency Impact Award last night at the 2015 NZI Sustainable Business Network Awards.Read More
Business has a clear plan for how it will lead on climate change over the next five years, according to the Sustainable Business Council.Read More
Resene PaintWise has received praise from the Ministry for the Environment (MfE) for ongoing waste reduction.Read More
This year, for the very first time, WasteMINZ have introduced the WasteMINZ Awards for Excellence.Read More
3R Group are proud to announce the arrival of our latest plastic processing unit, affectionately known as "The Granulator". Feed the machine!Read More
The SeatSmart child car seat recycling programme is opening in Christchurch thanks to support from Canterbury’s Sustainable Initiatives Fund Trust (SIFT).Read More
Everyday items only represent the tip of the iceberg in terms of what we could (and should) be recycling rather than sending to landfill.Read More
3R were proud sponsors of the Redefine - love your op shop event held at East Pier this last weekend.Read More
In July 3R Group hosted MP Jo Hayes (National list MP) as part of a three day Business Study Programme through the NZ Business and Parliament Trust.Read More
A recent Tyre Industry Summit, focusing on end-of-life tyres, demonstrated industry willingness to drive positive change, and asks government to come along for the ride.Read More
Our CEO, Adele Rose, talks to Idealog magazine about how many companies want to keep it green, but are in the dark about the actual cost efficiencies that can be achieved.Read More
New Zealand’s track record with end-of-life tyres is littered with good intentions, dubious science and failed investments.Read More
3R's project manager Michelle Duncan answers a few questions about our latest programme, SeatSmart.Read More
The future of product stewardship in New Zealand as I see it is a place where stewardship is the norm, not the exception; where end-of-life considerations for the impacts on human and environmental harm sit at the beginning of the design process, notRead More
3R Group has secured funding to support a nationwide collection to rid New Zealand of banned pesticides known to be stored on rural properties despite being phased out decades ago.Read More
We believe the business models using resources most efficiently to meet their customer’s expectations are the ones which will remain competitive in tomorrow’s markets.Read More
In late February, following a 5 month process, 3R was delighted to become CEMARS certified, a standard that sits very comfortably alongside our ISO 14001 Environmental certification.Read More
The SeatSmart project featured in the December edition of Revolve, the magazine of WasteMINZ, the largest representative body of the waste and resource recovery sector in New Zealand.Read More
This week saw the final day to submit feedback on the E-Waste Product Stewardship Preliminary Report.Read More
At the end of October 3R Group Director Graeme Norton attended the 2014 Rubber Recycling Symposium in Montreal.Read More
3R has partnered with KPMG to deliver a project for the Ministry for the Environment, building on the Tyrewise reports to recommend an investment strategy for on-shore end-of-life tyre (ELT) processing.Read More
This week our team got together to recharge the batteries and set the scene for our next year or two of work.Read More
It was fantastic to read the LGNZ Manifesto 2014: Our Seven Strategic Policy Priorities recently released by Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ).Read More
Leading corporate affairs practitioner and experienced director Liz Read has been elected Independent Chair of 3R Group’s Board.Read More
A new survey shows more than half of car tyre purchasers would be prepared to pay a levy to assist in the environmentally friendly disposal of tyres.Read More
Over the last year, we’ve refocused and are now embarking on a nationwide re-launch of our brand and capabilities.Read More
3R Group Ltd worked with industry stakeholders to conduct a review that provides recommendations for a nationwide and industry wide product stewardship programme for agricultural chemicals and their associated containers.Read More