Racing to Zero: In Pursuit of Zero Waste

from Multimedia Library Collection:
Environmental Film Profiles (videos)

Beaver, Christopher. Racing to Zero: In Pursuit of Zero Waste. San Francisco: Filmmakers Collaborative, 2014. HD, 59 min.

In order to reach zero waste, we need to change our relationship to garbage and how to view the things we discard as resources, rather than waste. As a resource, our garbage can take on another life, stay out of the landfill, and enter into a cycle that is cradle to cradle, reused and recreated over and over again. Racing to Zero examines today’s cultural garbage practices in terms of consumption, preparation, use and production. Only one third of the waste in the United Stated is recycled or composted. Why? Industry, through its practice of planned obsolescence, plays a major role; our lives are almost totally dependent on unrecyclable petroleum products. Three years ago, the mayor of San Francisco pledged to achieve zero waste by 2020. Racing to Zero tracks San Francisco’s waste stream diversion tactics and presents innovative new solutions to waste. (Source: Adapted from the Official Film Website

© 2014 Bullfrog Films, Inc. Trailer used with permission.

This film is available at the Rachel Carson Center Library (RCC, 4th floor, Leopoldstrasse 11a, 80802 Munich) for on-site viewing only. For more information, please contact

About the Environmental Film Profiles collection

Further readings: 
  • Alexer, Catherine, and Joshua Reno, eds. Economies of Recycling: The Global Transformation of Materials, Values and Social Relations. London: Zed Books, 2012.
  • Connett, Paul. The Zero Waste Solution: Untrashing the Planet One Community at a Time. Burlington, VT: Chelsea Green Publishing, 2013.
  • Gallini, Stefania. "The Zero Garbage Affair in Bogotá." In: “A Future without Waste? Zero Waste in Theory and Practice,” edited by Christof Mauch, special issue, RCC Perspectives 3 (2016): 69–77.
  • Mauch, Christof, ed. "A Future without Waste? Zero Waste in Theory and Practice.” Special issue, RCC Perspectives 3 (2016): 69–77.
  • Melosi, Martin V. Garbage In The Cities: Refuse Reform and the Environment. Pittsburgh: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2000.
  • Rajkumar, Ponnusamy. "A Study on the Plastic Waste and Environmental Degradation." ABC Journal of Advanced Research 4, no. 1 (2015): 9–15.
  • Strasser, Susan. Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash. Chicago: Holt Paperbacks, 2000.