Recycling on campus just became easier. In partnership with Facilities Services, the Office of Sustainability placed 17 recycling bins across the university over winter break. The bins can be found on the mall by the Strand Union Building and in front of Reid, Cheever, Jake Jabs, Gaines and Roskie Halls.
The bins are a step in infrastructure for MSU’s Climate Action Plan. For the past several years, the Office of Sustainability has completed a waste audit of the university’s trash output. Their findings have shown that about 20 percent of garbage that is thrown away can be recycled, and the newly placed bins are working to divert those materials. By 2020, the university’s goal is to have 25 percent of all waste generated on campus to be diverted in some way. Eventually, the aim is to surpass a 50 percent diversion rate — an achievable goal, considering some universities have diversion rates up to 80 percent.
Logun Norris, the Office of Sustainability’s recycling coordinator, hopes that the new bins will lead to increased consciousness concerning sustainability on campus and help in correct recycling of cans and plastic. “If there’s not a recycling bin in sight, you’re less likely to recycle,” Norris explained. “We’re hoping that by placing these, students will be become aware and recycle rather than throw recyclables in the trash.”
The bins can be used to recycle aluminum cans and plastic bottles. MSU has locations to recycle other materials, such as paper, cardboard and scrap steel, as well as compost for pre-consumer waste and wooden palettes. The Office of Sustainability also focuses on biking and transportation projects, improving sustainability measures in campus buildings and assisting with student projects.