Transy Competes In Recycling

by Amanda Holt
Contributing Writer

Many of you may have walked into Front Lobby last week and noticed a few new inhabitants—some recycling bins strategically placed next to every trash can. While you may not have thought anything of it, the appearance of these bins is no random occurrence; they now grace Front Lobby because Transylvania University is in the midst of a competition—Recyclemania.

This competition began in 2001, with the hope of encouraging college residents to think about their consumption, and more specifically about their waste. It has quickly grown to include over 400 schools nation wide, including six from Kentucky. Recyclemania promotes a prolonged shift to smart recycling practices as well as overall waste reduction.

The Recyclemania website explains the competition: “Over a 10-week period, schools report recycling and trash data which are then ranked according to who collects the largest amount of recyclables per capita, the largest amount of total recyclables, the least amount of trash per capita or have the highest recycling rate. With each week’s reports and rankings, participating schools watch how their results fluctuate against other schools and use this to rally their campus communities to reduce and recycle more.”

Transylvania’s participation comes as a result of Dr. Shearer’s signing of the President’s Climate Commitment, which commits our school to working towards carbon neutrality. The waste management subcommittee of the President’s sustainability advisory committee is working together to make this event a success. Physical Plant will track the volume of recyclables collected each week, which they will then report to the Recyclemania website (to see how we’re doing, visit recyclemaniacs.org).

Residence Life, Transylvania Environmental Rights and Responsibilities Alliance and some professors will help promote environmental responsibility, waste reduction and recycling by overseeing an initiative called “Get Caught Green Handed.” If students are seen recycling or engaging in an otherwise environmentally conscious behavior, they will receive a free Bisphenol A-free reusable water bottle. Bisphenol A is a hormone disrupting chemical found in some plastics, but not these bottles.

From Jan. 18 to March 28, you may want to pay extra attention to what you throw away. Take an extra minute to walk to a recycle bin to dispose of that soda can, plastic water bottle or newspaper. Not only will you help the environment but you will also help our school win this competition. Be a Recyclemaniac these next couple of months, and help us prove Transy’s commitment to promoting sustainability and upholding the President’s Climate commitment.

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