About TRUE

TRUE (Total Resource Use and Efficiency) strives to change the way materials flow through society so that all products are eventually reused and diverted from landfill, incineration (waste-to-energy) and the environment.

Administered by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), the TRUE Zero Waste certification system is a complement to LEED and other green rating systems. As markets continue to urbanize and industrialize, cities and businesses are faced with an increasing amount of waste that puts strain on resources and communities.

What is TRUE?

  • TRUE helps facilities define, pursue and achieve zero waste goals while becoming more resource efficient. TRUE-certified spaces are environmentally responsible and achieve a minimum of 90 percent waste diversion.
  • TRUE focuses on helping businesses, industrial sectors, schools and more restructure operations to prevent waste from being manufactured. TRUE works with organizations to track the flow of waste and the output helping facilities find ways to redesign production and distribution systems.
  • The rating system helps facilities rethink how resources are used. Companies who have TRUE-certified facilities include Microsoft, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co., Tesla and more.
  • TRUE Advisor is a professional credential that recognizes individuals who are experts on zero waste policies and programs. To earn the credential, candidates must participate in online training and pass a final assessment.
  • GBCI joined forces with the U.S. Zero Waste Business Council in 2016 to advance zero waste business practices. TRUE, formerly known as Zero Waste certification, creates a solid foundation that advances the integrity and credibility of zero waste globally. The TRUE program helps GBCI drive green business practices across all sectors of business.


  • TRUE creates opportunities for companies to reduce inefficiencies and costs. By pursuing certification, projects can help turn waste into savings and potentially new income streams.
  • TRUE applies best practices that supports public health, reduces environmental impact and advances a green economy. By closing the loop on waste, facilities can cut greenhouse gases, manage risk, reinvest resources, create jobs and add more value for their business.
  • By managing waste, businesses can have a significant impact on carbon emissions. In addition, zero waste strategies can also impact emissions from landfills and excess truck hauling, find ways to utilize recycled content and overall reduce consumption.
  • TRUE implementation helps businesses foster a zero waste culture. Pursuing TRUE certification can help build stronger relationships across teams.
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