UNK Today | August 2014 - page 59

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Welcome Back, UNK Students!
College of Education
Welcome Students to
WE ARE HERE TO SERVE YOU
!
Annual Waste Audit
Students’ help boosts recycling efforts on campus
UNK
Today
:
Campus & Community
West of Campus
on Hwy. 30
Just West of Cottonmill Rd
on top of the hill.
Hours: Sunday 6am–10pm
Monday–Saturday
6am–10pm
Come See Us For:
Scratch & Win!
Fresh-Baked Cinnamon
Rolls Every Morning
Lone Wolf Sausages
Nebraska Star Beef
All natural, Nebraska raised beef
Chips, Candy, Sandwiches
Beer, Liquor & Wine
Cigarettes & Chew
& A Lot More!
By JOSH MOODY
Hub Staff Writer
KEARNEY —Waste reduc-
tion and increased recycling
efforts at the University of
Nebraska at Kearney are pay-
ing off.
“UNK
pays the city
landfill for
the waste
that we
dump. By
removing
recyclable
materials
from that
stream, our
total bill
is lower,”
Director of
Facilities
Lee McQueen said.
Though figures on savings
are unavailable, McQueen
noted that the Kearney landfill
charges by weight.
According to the city’s
website, current disposal rates
are $27.50 a ton for compacted
waste and $32.50 per ton for
uncompacted waste.
For the last three years,
McQueen has
worked with
the University
Sustainability
Committee,
the Honors
program, and
the Residence
Hall Associa-
tion to conduct
a waste audit in which student
and faculty volunteers don
safety suits, goggles and rubber
gloves and dig through Dump-
sters to sort recyclables from
solid waste.
“It’s exciting to see the
enthusiasm that they bring
to what many people would
not volunteer for,” McQueen
said. “I think this event makes
the campus, as a whole, more
aware of recycling opportuni-
ties.”
The annual waste audit —
approaching its fourth year in
April — collects data to see
how recycling efforts are pay-
ing off and what can be done to
increase recycling.
“It came about as recognition
by facilities and by the sustain-
ability committee on campus
that we needed to get a better
idea of what the components
were of our waste stream,”
McQueen said. “It gives us
data on what we’re doing, and
that can help us in our con-
versations with the city to try
and minimize our solid waste
costs.”
The waste audit is conduct-
ed by analyzing the trash in
Dumpsters from a residence
hall and
from an
admin-
istrative
building.
Data over
the years
has shown
a decline
in trashed
recyclable
materials
and an over-
all increase
in recycling.
“The value to facilities is
that it helps us understand
the breakdown of materials,”
McQueen said.
McQueen credited the city
for working with facilities to
provide recycling bins around
campus.
“I’m always hopeful that
this event helps the campus
appreciate what a great system
we have in
Kearney,”
McQueen said,
noting that the
city does not
require recy-
clers to sort
and separate
materials.
McQueen
also said that student govern-
ment has helped to improve
recycling efforts at UNK by
voting to fund the installation of
12 new water refilling stations
on campus. McQueen hopes
that students will refill water
bottles for free at these stations
rather than using disposable
plastic bottles. Each water refill-
ing station keeps track of and
displays the projected number
of disposable water bottles
saved by using a refillable bottle
at these stations.
“I’m pleased that the student
interest is driving faculty and
staff maybe to be more interest-
ed,” McQueen said.
UNK will have its
fourth-annual waste audit in
April. Last year, more than 40
student and faculty volunteers
participated.
email to:
“It’s exciting to
see the
enthusiasm that they bring
to what many people would
not volunteer for. I think this
event makes the campus,
as a whole, more aware of
recycling opportunities.”
Lee McQueen
“I’m pleased that
the
student interest is driving
faculty and staff maybe
to be more interested.”
Lee McQueen
MIKE HANRA-
HAN,
left, and
Bryce Clay hand
trash down from
a Dumpster.
Hanrahan and
Clay were two of
about 45 volun-
teers who helped
with UNK’s third-
annual waste
audit in 2013.
STUDENTS WERE
given safety suits and goggles
to remain clean and avoid germs as they sorted trash
and recyclables.
THE WASTE AUDIT
has became an annual event in UNK’s Central
Plant. Both students and faculty members volunteer.
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In The Hub Classifieds
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