EMU fares well in Recyclemania

Eastern Mennonite University placed 28th in the “waste minimization” category out of 510 colleges and universities in a nationwide recycling challenge called Recylemania held during spring semester.
“That is the most comprehensive indicator of how well a school manages its waste, as it inherently includes any reducing and reusing of waste material in addition to recycling,” according to Jonathan Lantz-Trissel, recycling and waste reduction coordinator at EMU.

Lantz-Trissel described Recyclemania as “a friendly, 10-week competition and benchmarking tool for college and university recycling programs to promote waste reduction activities to their campus communities.

During the competition, schools reported recycling and trash data, which is 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.

EMU placed 33rd overall in the Grand Champions category, recycling 40.02 percent of its solid waste, Lantz-Trissel reported. recycling and waste reduction coordinator at EMU. That percentage “is up from 33.94 percent over last year, a marked improvement since more schools took part in the competition this year,” he noted.

As an added ecologically-friendly effort, Lantz-Trissel and student assistants use a custom-built bike, which pulls an specially-designed 8-foot trailer, to 24 recycling points on campus every week. The metal trailer can haul about 300 pounds at a time.

“I’m still trying to get bonus points for being the only school to not use fossil fuels to collect our recycling on campus,” Lantz-Trissel said. “Maybe we’ll get some special recognition in future competitions.”

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