JUNE 2010

RecycleMania – another successful campaign
607 colleges and universities compete

Every spring, students across the country become RecycleManiacs competing for national supremacy to determine which school can reduce, reuse and recycle the most campus waste.

RecycleMania wrapped up its 10th annual recycling competition in late March, with over 84.5 million pounds of recyclables and organics recovered from 607 colleges and universities across the country.

The spirit of friendly competition sparked huge environmental gains. The total amount of recyclables and organic materials recovered during the 2010 competition added up to 84.5 million pounds, which in turn prevented the release of nearly 137,500 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.

Colleges and universities chose to participate in one of two divisions, either the Competition or Benchmark. The Competition Division houses the traditional competitive rankings based on standard tracking and reporting criteria. The Benchmark Division allows schools to unofficially compare themselves with other schools and to promote RecycleMania on campus without the formal reporting requirements of the competitive ranking.

Within each division, schools participate in any of eight categories, including the “Grand Champion,” which measures recycling as a percentage of the total waste generation; the “Per Capita Classic,” which measures the largest amount of combined recyclables per person; the “Waste Minimization” competition, which tracks the lowest amount of waste per person; and the “Gorilla” Prize, which acknowledges the schools with the highest total combined recycling weights.

In addition to these main categories, schools also compete in targeted material categories to see who can recycle the most paper, cardboard, cans, bottles and food waste on a per capita basis.

The “Grand Champion” top three finalists, determined by the percentage of overall waste that is recycled over 10 weeks, were:

•California State University-San Marcos (71.82 percent) – San Marcos, California.

•New Mexico State University (69.05 percent) – Las Cruces, New Mexico.

•American University (64.90 percent) – Washington DC

The “Per Capita Classic” top three finalists, determined by total pounds of recyclables collected per person over 10 weeks, were:

•United States Coast Guard Academy (81.75 lbs.) – New London, Connecticut.

•Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering (63.14 lbs.) – Needham, Massachusetts.

•Colorado College (60.8 lbs.) – Colorado Springs, Colorado.

The “Waste Minimization” top three finalists, determined by the lowest amount of waste (recyclables and trash) per person over 10 weeks, were:

•North Lake College (6.17 lbs.) – Irving, Texas.

•Harford Community College (7.87 lbs.) – Bel Air, Maryland.

•Santa Monica College (8.13 lbs.) – Santa Monica, California.