We spoke with Mann about the importance of consumer education, corporate culture, Waste Management’s work on cannabis industry waste programs and more.
Here’s a sneak peek into the discussion:
Waste360: Can you tell us how your organics recycling programs are going, especially in light of California’s 2020 push to divert 75 percent of organics from the waste stream?
Josh Mann: I think it’s fair to say that there’s never been a more dynamic time to be in the industry, or a more challenging place to be in the country than California. But I’m very thankful that I get to do this work. We’re very engaged in the policy changes in California, and we’ve seen a real shift. In a lot of ways, we’ve gone from education and good-faith efforts to tangible programs that are helping to divert waste. We’re striking partnerships that help pave the way for more diversion and working with our communities, cities and counties to build out the rest of those programs. And we’re seeing some great progress.
Waste360: How is your team adapting and thriving, and what opportunities do you see?
Josh Mann: There are recently a lot more conversations around the idea of sustainability and getting down to the details of the waste stream—really positive conversations and opportunities. Additionally, our people-first approach is showing itself on a day-to-day basis. And we’re adding to our skill sets all the time, through technology and otherwise. So, it’s been a very exciting time.
Waste360: Do you see your career as a calling for environmental and social change?
Josh Mann: I do. People are drawn to the companies because they have a social purpose. The fact that Waste Management is mission-driven is what keeps me here doing the work that I do.