RecycleMania 2012 kicks off at Penn

Over the next eight weeks, Penn will compete with more than 600 colleges and universities across the United States and Canada in RecycleMania 2012 to see which schools can most significantly minimize waste streams and achieve the highest recycling rates.

Penn has been recycling approximately 30 percent of its paper, cardboard, glass, plastic, and metal waste since July 2011. For RecycleMania 2012, the University is aiming to top 32 percent.  

Everyone in the Penn community can help by reducing, reusing, and recycing more often. They can even compete against their peers in University offices and labs.

“The industry is getting better at finding more ways to recycle more materials,” says Dan Garofalo, Penn’s sustainability coordinator. “And with our initiative to consolidate recycling and trash bins across campus, it is easier than ever for the campus community to recycle. RecycleMania is an opportunity to minimize the amount of waste you produce and make recycling a lifetime habit.”

Led by the Green Campus Partnership, which oversees the implementation of the University’s Climate Action Plan, various areas of the Penn community have made public commitments to improve their recycling efforts:

-- The School of Engineering and Applied Science will expand its battery recycling and desk-side recycling program in offices.

-- The School of Arts and Sciences plans to pilot desk-side recycling in one of its buildings.

-- The Perelman School of Medicine will offer hardcover book recycling in the Biomedical Research Building lobby during RecycleMania.

-- Facilities and Real Estate Services will roll out Phase 2 of a campus bin consolidation effort in which single trash cans will be paired with single- or dual-stream cans.

-- The Business Services Division will pilot centralized trash and desk-side recycling and participate in a recycling competition among offices at 3401 Walnut St. and Stouffer Commons.

-- The Wharton School will complete a recycling pilot in five Huntsman Hall group study rooms.

-- Staff & Faculty Eco-Reps will educate their offices through emails, posters and events, and will plan office clean ups during spring break.

Faculty, staff, and students can pick up information about recycling at Penn, and learn about Green Campus Partnership giveaways, at RecycleMania kickoff events running from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. today in the Silfen Study Center and tomorrow, Feb. 10, in Levine Hall. 

In addition, on Thursday, Feb. 16, the Perelman School of Medicine will host a sustainability fair in the Biomedical Research Building lobby, and other “pop-up” events will occur throughout the competition.

For recycling tips and contest standings, visit the Green Campus Partnership website.