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Waste Management Strategies


A focus on waste management and reduction aligns with the principles of a circular economy, where resources are used, reused, and regenerated in a closed-loop system. This approach minimizes waste generation and promotes long-term sustainability, reducing the ecological footprint and preserving natural resources. Organic waste management, reuse of building materials, electronic waste collection, and sustainable purchasing and material selection are a few practices that HOAs can do to contribute to a more sustainable and environmentally friendly community.

According to the City and County of Denver’s Greenhouse Gas Inventory for 2021, buildings produced 51% of the City’s total emissions, measured in metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (mt CO2e). These emissions generally come from energy use, material manufacturing, building construction, refrigerants, and renovations. While this transition may sound difficult, there are several benefits awaiting proactive building owners who choose to embrace these upgrades, including improved occupant health due to fewer released pollutants, savings on your energy bill, increased property values, and the creation of more livable communities. CAP Management wants to make this a seamless transition for you. See more below on how to get started.


  • Measurement and Evaluation:
    • Waste tracking, documentation of recycling and composting efforts, waste audits, and waste management plans
    • Material specifications, supplier certifications, and chain of custody tracking.
  • Use Sustainable Materials:
    • Assess the use of environmentally friendly and non-toxic materials, recycled content, locally sourced materials, and responsible sourcing practices.
  • Read the Zero Waste Design Guidelines

Recommended Three Year Action Plan

This action plan is a starting point and can be customized based on each specific HOAs needs and resources. Regular evaluation and adaptation of the plan will be essential for sustained success.

Year 1
  1. Conduct a Comprehensive Waste Assessment and Audit at the HOA
    • Helps to understand waste generation, disposal methods, and recycling/composting practices.
  2. Identify Areas of Improvement
    • This could mean a lack of infrastructure or contamination
  3. Implement Recycling Infrastructure
    • This may include providing bins, installing signage to educate residents, or partnering with a local waste management company.
  4. Education and Awareness
    • Launch an educational campaign to raise awareness among residents about the importance of waste reduction.
Year 2
  1. Source Separation Program
    • Implement separator collection systems for organic waste, such as food scraps and yard trimmings, composting, and organic waste
  2. Community initiatives
    • Foster a sense of community engagement by organizing waste reduction initiatives and events. Offer incentives for those who achieve significant waste reduction goals
  3. Performance evaluation
    • Monitor waste diversion rates, contamination levels, and resident feedback to identify areas for improvement
Year 3
  1. Waste Reduction Strategies
    • Expand waste reduction efforts & encourage residents to adopt a reuse culture.
  2. Technology and Innovation
    • Explore technology to streamline waste management processes such as smart management systems.
  3. Long-term Planning and Partnerships
    • Develop a long-term waste management plan that encompasses goals, strategies, and ongoing monitoring.

Cost Recommendations

  • Allocate a budget for purchasing bins or containers, educational material, and partnering with waste management company
  • Seek grants or subsidies from local government or environmental organizations
  • Allocate funds for source separation programs, community initiatives, and waste audits
  • Explore revenue generating opportunities such as selling recyclable materials

Rebates & Assistance Available for Waste Management Projects

    Four types of grants under this program: 1.Mini (most applicable to HOAs)
  1. Infrastructure
  2. End-market
  3. Regional (HOA not eligible)
    Mini Grant:
  • Between $5,00-$25,000
  • Application released in the fall on even years
  • Streamlined application process for small-scale projects
  • Used for equipment, supplies, and/or information and outreach material development
  • Supports new or existing recycling, organics, rescue, or waste reduction programs
    Denver provides a discount on trash services for low-income households.
  • Eligibility for the instant rebate will be based on household income and the number of people in the home, according to the Area Median Income table.
  • You are eligible to apply if:
    • You live in the City and County of Denver
    • You receive trash and recycling collection services from Denver’s Solid Waste division (at a single family home, townhome, duplex or apartment in a complex with 7 or fewer units)
    • You have an annual household income within these limits:
      • 1 person: up to $49,230
      • 2 people: up to $56,280
      • 3 people: up to $63,300
      • 4 people: up to $70,320
  • You can properly dispose of and recycle toxic products from your home with Denver’s Household Hazardous Waste Collection Program.
  • Denver residents are eligible for one collection appointment per calendar year.
  • Please note a $15 co-payment is required from the resident for each appointment.
  • Examples of accepted items include household batteries, flurescent tubes, cleaners, auto batteries and more

Benefits of Non-toxic Material Selection

HOAs should should prioritize material transparency and selection for many reasons including:

  • Health and safety of residents (minimize toxins and improve indoor air quality)
  • Sustainability and environmental impact (smaller overall carbon footprint)
  • Long-term cost savings (less maintenance, better durability, and contribute to energy efficiency, translating into cost savings over the long run for both HOAs and homeowners)
  • Attractiveness (tend to have higher resale value and can enhance community’s image)

Product Labels & Certifications

HOAs can ensure products purchased for future repair, renovation, or replacement of building materials comply with one of the following disclosure organizations:

Other Resources

    It is important when selecting materials that your product:
  • Is free of compounds listed in the Living Building Challenge’s Red List v.4.0.3
  • Meets the chemical thresholds in the Cradle to Cradle Basic Level Restricted Substances List, version 4.4
  • Does not contain compounds listed in REACH Restriction, Authorization and SHVC lists.