Get Ready to Recycle

Feb 022009
Authors: Stephen Lin

Recyclemania has officially kickedoff, and the competition will be fierce.

Starting Monday over 500 schools began a 10-week competition to see which institution can recycle the most.

Last year CSU took second place behind Kalamazoo College in the “Grand Champion” category, which measures the highest total recycling rate, at 51.35 percent.

The contest fits in with CSU’s “Green University” campaign since “recycling reduces energy use and helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said Carol Dollard, an Energy Engineer at Facilities Management, in an e-mail.

Dollard had high aspirations for this year, and said, “while coming in second is a notable achievement, it would be great to take the top prize this year.”

Last year Recyclemania got students across the nation to recycle 58.6 million pounds. Just in time for the competition, CSU also announced that single stream recycling is now available to students. All recycling now goes into a single bin making sorting unnecessary.

Toni Miyamoto, director of communication for Housing and Dining Services, said the new system would “make it a lot easier for people to recycle” since you can “put everything into one recycle bin.”

“Recycling is one piece of the sustainability program on campus,” Miyamoto said.

Also at 8 a.m. on Feb. 11, there will be a “trash audit” performed on campus, where workers from the Integrated Solid Waste program will unload trash from dumpsters around CSU onto the end of University Avenue at the west end of the Plaza. Then, the Live Green Team will separate the recyclable materials from the other waste.

Miyamoto said last year “40 percent (of the trash) could have been recycled.”

The Live Green Team, sponsored by Housing and Dining Services, is a group of students and staff committed to promoting waste reduction.

Other competitions in Recyclemania are the Per Capita Classic, which measures the lowest amount of cans, paper and cardboard per person; Waste Minimization, which measures the lowest amount of trash produced per person; the Gorilla Prize, which measures the highest gross of recyclables; and Targeted Materials, which measures the most paper, cardboard, bottles and cans, and food service organics per person respectively.

CSU also ranked fifth last year in the “Waste Minimization” category.

According to numbers provided by the Sustainability in Facilities Management Web site, CSU ranks 12th after one week in the Grand Champion division.

The competition officially kicked off Jan. 18, but the first two weeks of the competition are used as a trial for universities to practice reporting their numbers to Recyclemania.

Recyclemania ends on March 28.

Staff writer Stephen Lin can be reached at

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