Although the 3E philosophy was laid down in the relevant legislation at the end of 2010 (Art. 178 of the Single Environment Code), it had been a pillar of SAGER activities well before the passing of this law, when the Company chose the 3Es as its brand.
A “Green” environment is a widely supported concept, however to be put into practice, it needs to be reinterpreted into “GREEEN”, a global approach and philosophy at the service of environment and sustainable development.
According to the data available in scientific literature, a 1% increase in GDP corresponds to a 0,69% increase of waste production. Moreover, waste management entails costs that tend to be unpopular, therefore it is fundamental to adopt a global approach, i.e. the 3E vision. This is the only viable solution to turn challenges into “opportunities”.
|Effectiveness||action able to meet needs (set and achieved results)|
|Efficiency||production of goods and services with the lowest possible resource use (technical efficiency) and with the highest possible clients/users’ satisfaction (allocation efficiency)|
|Economic viability||activity costs proportioned to available resources (input/output)|
While the concept of economic viability is quite intelligible, the meaning of the other 2Es is illustrated in the following diagram.
Efficiency and economic viability alone are not enough, as they have to be verified in the light of the effectiveness of adopted solutions. Therefore, despite being linked to effectiveness, efficiency and economic viability are actually subordinated concepts. A correct 3E balance results in greater flexibility and rapid reaction to both current and future challenges for any organisation, specifically SAGER, that has embraced such philosophy.
The following examples are useful to have a better understanding of what is needed to perform a complex task such as waste management according to a 3E approach.
|Objective||maximise waste sorting – resource: soil (reduction of soil consumption for resource extraction and waste landfills)|
|Effectiveness||door-to-door collection is more effective than street collection, allowing for a higher waste recovery percentage and lower soil consumption for residual waste landfills|
|Economic viability||door-to-door collection requires more resources – check of availability in relation with disposal costs|
|Efficiency||choice of required equipment and vehicles proportioned to real needs in terms of number and frequency, to avoid squandering as opposed to street collection|
|Objective||reduce air pollution related in waste management – resource: air|
|Effectiveness||employment of cleaner and less noisy trucks or route optimization to reduce wastes in vehicle management; route optimization is more effective as it also helps reducing public disturbance and traffic congestion risks|
|Economic viability||the second option is also possible using fewer resources|
|Efficiency||improvement of collection planning is more efficient as it helps reducing squandering and requires fewer resources|