This semester UAH participated in RecycleMania, a nationwide recycling competition, for the first time.
RecycleMania involved all residence halls. Starting at the end of January, each residence hall’s recycling bins were weighed, and their weight divided by the number of residents in the hall to get an average amount recycled per person. The winning residence hall will receive a pizza party, visited by puppies from the Humane Society around exam time.
In preparation for RecycleMania, UAH’s Sustainability Program and its Zero Waste Team conducted a waste audit of the campus to see how many recycling bins were on campus, where they were, and where additional signage was needed.
Emilie Springer, a member of the Zero Waste Team, conducted the audit of CVO and CVA, finding that “out of all of that, all five floors of CVA… and for CVO… there was one little bin on the second floor of CVO. And it wasn’t always there. So after that they got recycling bins on every floor, which is good.”
The Sustainability Program also plans to add more bins in the dorms. “Students don’t even know that there was a recycling competition and the bins are full. So if we’d really publicized it, there would be no space.”
UAH will be participating in RecycleMania again next year, using this year’s results to compare next to year’s. The Sustainability Program hopes to increase recycling next year, Mr. Myers said, “Each year we’ll have a recycling competition among the dorms and were going to have among ourselves. So next year we’re going to try and beat the total amount that we did this year.”
Until then, both The Sustainability Program and the Zero Waste Team will have their hands full with upcoming events on Earth Day. The Program will also be teaming up with the Residence Hall Association to conduct Green Move Out, an initiative headed by Mark Reiter to reduce waste, diverting it away from the landfill at the end of the semester.