New waste reporting standard available

AMSTERDAM – Organizations now have the means to disclose a complete picture of the waste impacts in their activities, products and services – following the launch of a new reporting standard by global sustainability standards provider GRI.

GRI 306: Waste 2020, which updates previous GRI disclosures on waste, requires organizations to report on waste generated throughout the value chain, and release detailed information on its composition and how it is managed. Developed by a multi-stakeholder group of experts, it is now freely available as part of the GRI Standards.

The GRI Waste Standard updates, expands and replaces GRI 306: Effluents & Waste 2016. The content was developed by a 15-member expert working group and underwent an open public comment period in 2019.

“As the disruption to systems and supply chains caused by COVID-19 has shown, companies need to re-think how they do business if they are to be resilient,” said Tim Mohin, GRI chief executive.

“The time is right – in fact, overdue – for a shift to more sustainable practices. GRI’s new Waste Standard will enable organizations to critically assess waste generation and be a driver for improvement.

This is about fundamentally challenging the perception of waste, from an unwanted residue to a valuable resource. Our Waste Standard supports this by providing universally applicable best practice on managing waste impacts in a way that raises ambition for circularity.”

Judy Kuszewski is chair of the Global Sustainability Standards Board – the independent body responsible for developing and implementing the GRI Standards. She said: “This is the disclosure standard that the world needs. It reflects the transition from an outdated ‘take, make, waste’ industrial model to one that that designs out waste and minimizes its impacts. The GRI Waste Standard will help any forward-thinking organization demonstrate to stakeholders – such as communities, customers, investors and governments – that they have a holistic and progressive approach to waste.”

Arne Ragossnig of the International Solid Waste Association said: “For the first time, the revised GRI Waste Standard allows for indirect waste impacts – upstream and downstream – to be made visible. I am convinced that this broadening of the scope will increase sustainability efforts by reporting businesses, underpinning changes across the value chain with positive effects on how waste is generated and managed.”

 Amisha Parekh, Product Manager, Sustainable Finance Solutions at Bloomberg LP, said: “How businesses manage waste matters to investors, who are increasingly factoring sustainability costs and opportunities into their company assessments and demanding better disclosure. This GRI Standard will help companies demonstrate how they are responding to rising investor and consumer awareness of waste-related issues and prioritizing waste and circularity practices throughout their operations and supply chains.”


The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) is the independent international organization that helps businesses, governments other organizations understand and communicate their impacts.