Zero Waste Valet Associate (DEN ZWV Project)

UPDATED July 2024

about the project

The Denver International Airport (DEN) has an ambitious goal to become the most sustainable airport in the world. Though DEN is making great strides in renewable energy, GHG emissions reductions, and other areas of environmental significance, the airport’s waste diversion rate continues to hover around 20%. 

Waste composition studies at the airport have shown that 60% of what is being sent to landfill is actually recyclable or compostable, and that there’s a 30% contamination rate in the recycling stream. In order to increase waste diversion and decrease contamination, DEN is piloting a first-of-its-kind Zero Waste Valet project. This project is aimed at DEN concessions, which are one of the largest sources of waste across the airport. We anticipate that when the Zero Waste Valet project is fully up and running, we will keep 62 tons of waste out of the landfill each month! 

The project is taking place on the B concourse and the expected timeline is 18 months. Concourse B is the busiest in terms of passenger traffic and has the most concession locations, making it a perfect location for a pilot program. It is important to note that this concept has never been tested anywhere in the aviation industry, and there will be a lot of trial and error involved. Individuals interested in joining this groundbreaking team should be prepared to face challenges and think creatively to ultimately create an effective, high-impact program.

about the position 

The Zero Waste Valet Associate is responsible for transporting recyclables, compostables and trash for concessions on the B concourse, and educating their staff about best practices in waste diversion. The ZWV Associate will also be responsible for communicating with the Program Manager, Program Director and DEN Airport Sustainability team about how concessions are performing, rates of contamination, and ideas for improvement and/or increased efficiencies for the program. ZWV Associates will weigh each waste stream from each concession and record that weight, along with any instances of contamination, using a specially designed software. This data will be used by Scraps and DEN to report on the impact of the pilot program and to generate progress reports for the concessions themselves. After weights are recorded, ZWV Associates will bring the waste to the proper disposal area (chute, compactor, toter, etc) throughout the concourse.

Along with transporting waste streams and monitoring for contamination, this position will involve client interaction and requires an ability to communicate effectively. ZWV Associates should be able to convey the goals and objectives of the program, and answer questions about composting, recycling and the benefits of waste diversion. Training will be provided. This role may also involve administrative work such as generating concession diversion reports, marketing and advertising support, and compost and waste diversion training for concessions staff and others. There is opportunity for significant growth in this position, as you will be among the first team members to help implement this zero waste vision at DEN.

The Zero Waste Valet Associate will work directly under the Manager and Director to help execute this groundbreaking Zero Waste Valet program, and will have the support of the DEN Sustainability team. This is an on-site project and requires the individual to commute to the airport each day. Individuals will be required to undergo a background check and security testing in order to receive a DEN-issued badge.


This position will start at 20 hours per week with the expectation to move to full-time within 6-8 weeks of the start date. 


  • Able to lift at least 50 lbs 
  • Experience and comfortability handling (non-hazardous) waste 
  • Comfortable sorting through waste to remove contaminants
  • Ability to stand and walk for extended periods of time
  • Flexible, creative and open to the challenges that may arise when implementing a complex pilot project
  • Team-oriented thinking, but able to work alone for significant periods

Preferred qualifications: 

  • Knowledge regarding compostable and recyclable material, and what is considered contamination in each waste stream
  • Understanding of the value of waste diversion as a sustainability practice and passion for the zero waste mission
  • Bilingual in English and Spanish
  • Customer service experience

Compensation & hours

  • $25/hour (hourly position), with benefits, and opportunity for merit-based pay increases 
  • Generous PTO, flexible leave policy
  • Hours will be flexible initially, hoping to settle into a consistent schedule within the first 3 months. Weekend and / or evening hours required.
  • Retirement savings account
  • ICHRA (healthcare reimbursement plan) of up to $350/mo
  • Tuition Reimbursement Program
  • EcoPass and/or free parking in the airport employee lot


about Scraps: 

Scraps is a mission-driven company that aims to make composting accessible and commonplace, truly the norm throughout our community. We treat composting as both a goal and a means to an end – an exceptional service that we provide to our members, and an easy first step along a person or a business’s journey to a more waste-free lifestyle. We work toward a future without food waste, and we strive to minimize our footprint while maximizing our positive impact along the way. 

Scraps is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Scraps does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, non-disqualifying physical or mental disability, national origin, veteran status or any other basis covered by appropriate law. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, merit & business need.

to apply:
please send your letter of interest & resume to