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Recyclemania is back for another year of environmental competition | The Triangle

Recyclemania is back for another year of environmental competition

Photograph by Ben Ahrens for The Triangle.

Do you have lots of plastics, paper, cardboard and glass building up in your dorm or apartment? If so, throw them in the nearest recycling bin to help earn Drexel some points in an exciting competition. It’s “Recyclemania” time!

Drexel University is participating in Recyclemania, a competition between colleges and universities to promote recycling and other waste reduction activities. The eight-week competition began on Feb. 2 and runs until March 28.

According to Drexel Real Estate and Facilities’ Sustainable Operations’ website, the goals of Recyclemania are to motivate students and staff to recycle, generate attention and support for recycling programs on campus, measure recycling activity and engage in friendly and fair competition.

Drexel is competing against numerous schools nearby, including Temple University, Villanova University, Rosemont College, Pennsylvania State University and Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and Rutgers University in New Jersey.

Current figures show that, in Week One of Recyclemania, Drexel’s weekly recycling rate was 56.66 percent, up from 14.23 percent in Week One of last year’s contest. This year, Drexel recycled .04 pounds per person for Week One of the contest.

The measurements come from weight tickets submitted by Drexel’s contracted hauler for all open-top containers and trash compactors on campus. Recycling amounts from smaller containers come from an estimated weekly average based on 12 months of scheduled pickups.

Everyone can help earn points for Drexel in the Recyclemania competition and getting involved is relatively easy, according to the Real Estate and Facilities website.

A Recyclemania collection event was held Feb. 20 by Real Estate and Facilities in the Recreation Center Lobby. Members of the Drexel community interested in recycling paper, old cell phones, batteries, specific computer equipment, used ink cartridges, plastic, glass and aluminum containers were invited to drop them off during the event.

Aside from collection events, there are day-to-day steps you can take to help increase recycling at Drexel. Real Estate and Facilities asks that students and staff print out a copy of the Drexel Recycling Guide and post it wherever possible, including their office, dorm building, apartment building, trash rooms and common areas. Doing so will help educate others about what waste can be safely recycled.

It also asks that members of the Drexel community brush up on their safe recycling practices. Drexel uses “single-stream recycling,” which means recycled waste does not need to be sorted. This process makes recycling easier and more convenient for all.

“No need to sort your paper from plastic – it all goes to the same place,” Real Estate and Facilities wrote on its website.

Real Estate and Facilities is also encouraging community members to “surrender their trash can.” As a fight against laziness, it says moving a trash can to an inconvenient place will make everyone more willing to recycle.

“Forcing yourself (and your colleagues) to walk farther to throw something away increases the likelihood you’ll opt for recycling,” Real Estate and Facilities wrote.

It’s also suggested that you begin spring cleaning early this year during Recyclemania. Properly disposing recyclable materials during the competition will jumpstart your cleaning and help Drexel in the competition.

“The more you recycle during the next eight weeks, the better Drexel’s [Recyclemania] numbers will be,” Real Estate and Facilities wrote. The colleges and universities who win Recyclemania receive an award and a trophy.

“Winning schools receive an award made out of recyclable materials and win the right to host that category’s special traveling trophy for the coming year,” Recyclemania wrote.