|Montreux, Switzerland in the Fog|
Depending on which canton you live in there are many different regulations on trash that you create. I live in one of the more relaxed cantons, Valais, however certain cantons like Zurich have such high taxes on trash that people actively try to reduce waste before it even comes into their homes. There have been stories of people unpacking products in stores so that they don't have to pay for the waste that the packaging creates. This in turn influences the stores to sell products with less packaging which goes back to suppliers who also reconsider the amount of packaging they use for all of their products - and the cycle continues.
|Dragon recycling bin in Montreux, Switzerland|
Trash isn't the only way that Switzerland has made an impact on sustainability practices, but this is one of the most well regulated systems I've seen so far. I hope to see it expand so that more people are reducing not just recycling. If you would like to read more in detail about this trash system or what we in Switzerland call the trash police this is a very good article detailing the system - in a very satirical way: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2014-06-04/swiss-garbage-police-irk-foreigners-reeling-after-vote
Don't forget, it's - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. There is a reason reduce comes first! Lets use Switzerland as an example and see how much we really waste this month. What do you think about the laws? Would the amount you waste per month break your bank?