Waste Management announces environmental initiative to serve as platform for sustainable growth



    Investments in waste based energy, recycling, fuel efficiency, new waste
    technologies and protected habitats

    NEW YORK, Oct. 11 /CNW/ - Waste Management, North America's largest
provider of waste and environmental services, today announced an environmental
initiative to increase the value of the company's services to its customers
while benefiting the environment.
    The actions, to be unveiled by Waste Management CEO David P. Steiner at a
luncheon and via webcast (see coordinates below) during the World Business
Forum in New York, will span much of the Fortune 200 company's diversified
services and will include investments in waste-based energy, recycling, fuel
efficiency, new waste technologies and protected habitats. Specifically, the
company plans to:

    
      -  Increase waste-based energy production. Today, Waste Management
         creates enough energy for the equivalent of 1 million homes each
         year. By 2020 it expects to double that output, producing enough
         energy for the equivalent of more than 2 million homes.

      -  Increase the volume of recyclable materials processed. Waste
         Management currently manages 8 million tons of recyclables; by 2020
         it plans to capture enough of the increasing volumes to process more
         than 20 million tons.

      -  Direct its capital spending of up to $500 million per annum over a
         10-year period to increase the fuel efficiency of its fleet by
         15 percent and reduce fleet emissions by 15 percent by 2020. The
         company also expects to invest in technologies to enhance its waste
         business.

      -  Preserve and restore wildlife habitat across North America. By 2020,
         Waste Management plans to increase by more than four times the
         number of facilities - from 24 to 100 - certified by the Wildlife
         Habitat Council, and increase the number of acres set aside for
         conservation and wildlife habitat to approximately 25,000.
    

    The company will report publicly on its progress in each of these areas
on a regular basis.
    The company believes these actions will further position Waste Management
as the industry leader in waste and environmental services, while improving
its overall impact to the environment and differentiating it from its
competitors.
    "Taking innovative steps to protect and enhance the environment has been
a historically successful business approach for Waste Management," said
Steiner. "By increasing our focus on the environment, we expect to better meet
the needs of our customers, the communities we serve and our shareholders. We
continue to evaluate all of these opportunities through the lens of
maintaining our capital expenditures at approximately 10% of revenue and
accomplishing our primary financial objectives, which include earnings growth,
margin expansion and higher returns on invested capital."

    A History of Environmental Leadership

    Waste Management has pioneered environmentally sustainable solutions to
waste needs. In addition to being North America's largest recycler, the
company is a leader in waste based energy technologies.
    As a result of its efforts to date, Waste Management has achieved the
following environmental progress:

    
      -  Waste Management supplies enough waste based energy to replace over
         14 million barrels of oil per year.
      -  In 2006 alone, Waste Management recycled enough paper to save
         41 million trees.
      -  Waste Management's landfills provide more than 17,000 acres of
         protected wildlife habitat - the Wildlife Habitat Council has
         certified 24 of these sites.
    

    "With each person in North America producing four and a half pounds of
garbage each day, we've become a leader in environmental stewardship," said
Steiner. "We're a company that protects and enhances the environment through
what we do each and every day. We believe that as we improve our environmental
stewardship, our profitability will improve as well."
    Mr. Steiner's speech during the World Business Forum outlining the
company's environmental initiative can be seen via webcast at www.wm.com/wbf/.
The speech will begin at 12:45 p.m. EDT. Please log onto the webcast by
12:30 p.m. EDT.

    About Waste Management

    Waste Management, based in Houston, Texas, is the leading provider of
comprehensive waste management services in North America. Our subsidiaries
provide collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery, and disposal
services. We are also a leading developer, operator and owner of
waste-to-energy and landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States.
Our customers include residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal
customers throughout North America. More information about how Waste
Management Thinks Green(R) can be found at www.wm.com/wm/thinkgreen.

    The Company, from time to time, provides estimates of financial and other
data, comments on expectations relating to future periods and makes statements
of opinion, view or belief about current and future events. Statements
relating to future events and performance are "forward-looking statements."
The forward-looking statements that the Company makes are the Company's
expectations, opinion, view or belief at the point in time of issuance but may
change at some future point in time. By issuing estimates or making statements
based on current expectations, opinions, views or beliefs, the Company has no
obligation, and is not undertaking any obligation, to update such estimates or
statements or to provide any other information relating to such estimates or
statements. Outlined below are some of the risks that the Company faces and
that could affect our financial statements for 2007 and beyond and that could
cause actual results to be materially different from those that may be set
forth in forward-looking statements made by the Company. However, they are not
the only risks that the Company faces. There may be additional risks that we
do not presently know or that we currently believe are immaterial which could
also impair our business. We caution you not to place undue reliance on any
forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates. The following
are some of the risks that we face:

    
      -  competition may negatively affect our profitability or cash flows,
         our price increases may have negative effects on volumes and price
         roll-backs and lower than average pricing to retain and attract
         customers may negatively affect our yield on base business;

      -  we may be unable to maintain or expand margins if we are unable to
         control costs;

      -  we may not be able to successfully execute or continue our
         operational or other margin improvement plans and programs,
         including pricing increases; passing on increased costs to our
         customers; reducing costs due to our operational improvement
         programs; and divesting under-performing assets and purchasing
         accretive businesses, any of which could negatively affect our
         revenues and margins;

      -  weather conditions cause our quarter-to-quarter results to
         fluctuate, and extremely harsh weather or natural disasters may
         cause us to temporarily shut down operations;

      -  inflation and resulting higher interest rates as well as other
         general and local economic conditions may negatively affect the
         volumes of waste generated, our financing costs and other expenses;

      -  possible changes in our estimates of site remediation requirements,
         final capping, closure and post-closure obligations, compliance and
         regulatory developments may increase our expenses;

      -  regulations, including regulations to limit greenhouse gas
         emissions, may negatively impact our business by, among other
         things, restricting our operations, increasing costs of operations
         or requiring additional capital expenditures;

      -  if we are unable to obtain and maintain permits needed to open,
         operate, and/or expand our facilities, our results of operations
         will be negatively impacted;

      -  limitations or bans on disposal or transportation of out-of-state or
         cross-border waste or certain categories of waste can increase our
         expenses and reduce our revenues;

      -  fuel price increases or fuel supply shortages may increase our
         expenses, including our tax expense if Section 45K credits are
         phased out due to continued high crude oil prices, or restrict our
         ability to operate;

      -  increased costs to obtain financial assurance or the inadequacy of
         our insurance coverages could negatively impact our liquidity and
         increase our liabilities;

      -  possible charges as a result of shut-down operations, uncompleted
         development or expansion projects or other events may negatively
         affect earnings;

      -  fluctuating commodity prices may have negative effects on our
         operating revenues and expenses;

      -  trends requiring recycling, waste reduction at the source and
         prohibiting the disposal of certain types of wastes could have
         negative effects on volumes of waste going to landfills and waste-
         to-energy facilities;

      -  efforts by labor unions to organize our employees may increase
         operating expenses and we may be unable to negotiate acceptable
         collective bargaining agreements with those who have been chosen to
         be represented by unions, which could lead to union-initiated work
         stoppages, including strikes, which could adversely affect our
         results of operations and cash flows;

      -  negative outcomes of litigation or threatened litigation or
         governmental proceedings may increase our costs, limit our ability
         to conduct or expand our operations, or limit our ability to execute
         our business plans and strategies; problems with the operation of
         our current information technology or the development and deployment
         of new information systems may decrease our efficiencies and
         increase our costs to operate;

      -  the adoption of new accounting standards or interpretations may
         cause fluctuations in reported quarterly results of operations or
         adversely impact our reported results of operations; and

      -  we may reduce or eliminate our dividend or share repurchase program
         or we may need to raise additional capital if cash flows are less
         than we expect or capital expenditures are more than we expect, and
         we may not be able to obtain any needed capital on acceptable terms.
    

    Additional information regarding these and/or other factors that could
materially affect results and the accuracy of the forward-looking statements
contained herein may be found in Part I, Item 1 of the Company's Annual Report
on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006.





For further information:

For further information: Waste Management, Inc., Analysts: Greg Nikkel -
(713) 265-1358; Media: Wes Muir - (905) 483-3099; Web site: http://www.wm.com

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Waste Management, Inc.

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