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Norm Ruttan

iWasteNot’s mission is to generate and scale digital infrastructure to support waste reduction and do this so well that it is just as cheap, easy, and efficient to act sustainably as it is to order online and throw away.

Tell us about yourself?

A High School Science Teacher, Park Naturalist for national parks, Park Manager and Superintendent for national parks, Executive Director of Biosphere Reserve, and owner of iWastenot Systems from 2003 to present.

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

I don’t think we would have changed anything or much. We have focused on refining existing products and services to make sure they work flawlessly and that they are a good fit for the market. We have kept our eyes open for new product opportunities and have begun developing those. If anything, maybe ‘filter out the long shots’.

What problem does your business solve?

We are helping North America move to a more circular economy, generating less waste, using less energy, creating less pollution, including greenhouse gases, and more in line with what the natural world is capable of supporting.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

The sheer waste in our society offends my common sense and sensibilities. So we work to find solutions to ‘Why are things wasted?’ and ‘How do we encourage and facilitate more reduce-reuse-recycle?’ and ‘How can we get folks to ‘care’ about the waste we’re all generating?’

What is your magic sauce?

We marry excellent technology to a deep knowledge of how waste is generated and managed, and with creative thinking about what has to be done to avoid wasting items and materials that have value. Plus, I am old enough to remember when we had a more circular economy and how happy we were living within that economy. Probably as happy or happier as many people are now.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

We want to continue to develop and refine tools that are a good fit for the market that help surplus chain managers do a much better job of reducing waste in a very complex situation. As a result of having the best tools available to the market, we want to double our size every three years.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

More ideas and expertise than we have money available to develop. Satisfaction with the status quo (though that’s changing quickly as climate change looms).

How can people get involved?

Sustainability managers. Surplus property managers. Recycling and Waste Managers. Contact us at to arrange for a 30-minute ‘Zoom’ chat to see if our tools and services can help you with your goals.