If you are interested in serving as a department recycling coordinator, or want more information on recycling at WHOI, contact Steve Senior at email@example.com or at x2355.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Reducing waste is the first step in controlling our environmental impact. When you reduce the amount of materials you individually waste, you decrease the total waste produced by the entire campus. This means that there is less to Reuse, Recycle, send to landfills, or incinerate which creates air pollution. Your impact directly affects what is purchased and discarded by WHOI. Therefore, the less you consume, the less WHOI will purchase. Reducing also means that you keep the environment in mind when doing personal shopping. You can look for goods packaged in recycled or recyclable materials and also consider whether you actually need the item. The longer a product lasts, the less frequently replacements are needed, reducing overall waste.
» Fact: The average American throws away 3.5 pounds of trash a day.
Although recycling is a desirable way to dispose of used and unwanted materials, waste prevention is a superior solution. Waste prevention saves both energy and money. Reusing is a simple way to decrease your environmental impact; it takes no extra time, just conscience action. The more you reuse products and materials, the less waste gets put into landfills where it will sit for thousands of years! While buying less is the easiest way to reduce what we use, reusing allows us to extend the life of items that have already been purchased.
» Fact: The reuse of one ton of paper saves enough energy to heat the average home for six months, saves 7,000 gallons of water, 380 gallons of oil, and 3 cubic yards of landfill space.
In the hierarchy of waste management, recycling is certainly not on top. Having less waste to begin with is clearly the first priority, but how we deal with the waste that we do create is also very important. Recycling saves energy and other natural resources, which are becoming more scarce every day. It takes a great deal of both local and individual efforts to institute recycling effectively and efficiently. It needs to be available, accessible, easy to understand, and (eventually) automatic.
Q. Why do I have a "blue" recycle bucket in my office?
A. WHOI provides a recycling bin at every desk side. It is blue so that we can standardize the program from building to building.
Q. What goes in it?
A. Almost all paper items, cans, and plastics can go in the bin. See attached Recycle Guidelines.
Q. Do I have to empty it?
A. The cleaning staff will empty the containers every Wednesday evening.
Q. How do they have time to perform this additional task?
A. On Wednesdays, the cleaners will only empty trash cans in public areas, break/kitchenette areas, conference rooms, and bathrooms. This will provide them the necessary time to empty the recycling containers. This is the same method utilized at organizations with strong recycling programs.
Q. Why is my desk-side trash bin going away?
A. Proper recycling practices will minimize the need for "regular" trash. There will be a trash bin for such items in a central location on each floor.
Q. What should I do if I am not sure whether or not a particular item can be recycled?
A. Please see the attached Recycle Guidelines or contact Steve Senior at firstname.lastname@example.org.