Just months after signing the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment, HWS are now participating in Recyclemania, a nationwide competition between colleges and universities intended to increase recycling and reduce waste. Recyclemania is just one way that colleges who have signed the Presidents Climate Commitment are going green.
Hobart and William Smith were a charter member of the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment, which aims to reduce green house gases.
To compete in Recyclemania, HWS must measure and report the weight of their recyclable material weekly. We compete against other colleges to recycle the most material by weight. The Colleges are also participating in more specific categories of the competition, such as waste minimization and per capita paper recycling. For more information on the competition and the Colleges' progress, visit recyclemaniacs.org.
“The work that the Green Team is doing right now is essentially figuring out how to produce numbers to report to the Web site, understanding the waste processes on campus better, and thinking about and implementing ways to relate this information to the students along with ways to promote recycling and overall minimization of waste,” said Erin Cudd '09, member of the Green Team, the group of students tracking progress for the Recyclemania competition.
To encourage recycling, members of Campus Greens have pitched in to hold “Caught Green Handed,” a campus-wide competition for students. Members of the Campus Greens will give a button to students caught recycling. Each Monday, button recipients will be entered into a drawing for an environmentally friendly prize raffled at the College Store. The prizes, different each week, could be anything from a banana paper notebook to a travel mug to recycled printing paper.
“The point is that people get caught in the act without knowing it, so they should be recycling all the time!” explains Clancy Brown '09, member of Campus Greens and one of the students involved in the competitions.
“I think that awareness is everything,” Brown said. “The biggest goal of the Presidents Climate Commitment, Recyclemania, and other environmental efforts is to educate students so they will live more sustainable lives even after they leave HWS. Protecting our planet from global warming and other environmental crises will take everyone's participation, so the more people we can reach the better.”
The Recyclemania and Caught Green handed will end on April 6, after a 10-week period, excluding Spring Break.