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Student explains sustainability initiative

By Morgan Reeves
Contributuing Writer

Source: Mechanicsburgborough.com Recycling is one step that can help the environment.

Source: Mechanicsburgborough.com
Recycling is one step that can help the environment.

The sustainability program at Georgetown College has undergone some changes over the past few years. While it is still a work-in-progress, GC has taken steps to make recycling more accessible to all members on campus.

The college has acquired a variety of containers around campus in which people can place recyclable materials. Located in the student center, LRC, Rec, academic buildings and student dorms are three types of containers: small flip-top bins, blue cylinder containers and Pepsi bottle-shaped containers. Items that can go in these bins include paper, cardboard, aluminum cans and plastics No. 1 and No. 2. This includes plastic bottles as well as the plastic food containers from the Mulberry. Bottles, cans and food containers should be emptied before placed into the bins.

The second type of recycling containers are red “Herby Curby” type bins which are located behind almost every dorm. These bins are marked with the word “Recycle” and the reduce-reuse-recycle logo. These bins accept all materials that can be placed in the smaller bins around campus as well as glass.
Finally, GC has one recycling collection dumpster located in the back parking lot behind Anderson Hall.

The recycling dumpster is distinguishable from the waste dumpster by the words “GC Recycles” painted on the side. People can use the dumpster to recycle glass, paper, cardboard, aluminum and plastics No. 1 and No. 2. The dumpster also provides a means for recycling larger materials, such as cardboard boxes.

Bart Horne, Director of Facilities, explained that recycling also takes place behind the scenes. The Maintenance, Grounds and Building Services departments have their own recycling dumpster that they use to recycle materials from construction and maintenance work, such as compressors in air conditioners, light bulbs, cardboard and wooden pallets. The IT department takes care of recycling e-waste, including old printers, ink cartridges and computer screens.

Mr. Horne said that recycling is just one area related to sustainability that the college has been working to improve. GC is currently collaborating with energy management companies to evaluate the college’s energy use and ways to make it more cost-efficient and environmentally-conscious.

The college had a power-down operation over Christmas break. This included turning off computers and lights and adjusting the heating of buildings not in use over the break. In addition, GC is considering energy efficiency in dorm repairs and reconstructions by using Energy Star products and technology.”

“The biggest thing we can do is awareness. Energy management and recycling both require awareness of the general campus,” Mr. Horne commented. The Georgetown Sustainability Initiative, GC’s environmental action group, is collaborating with the Kentucky Student Environmental Coalition to implement sustainability projects on GC’s campus.

While GC continues to improve the sustainability of the college, the recycling program has come a long way since its beginning stages. If you have a suggestion for where a recycling bin is needed or if a recycling bin needs to be emptied, please call or leave a message for Tina Robinson in Building Services at 863-8116, indicating the location of the bin. If you would like to get involved with Georgetown’s environmental efforts, feel free to come to GSI meetings on Tuesdays at 5 p.m. in Asher 033.

All members of the GC community are encouraged to stop and think twice before throwing something recyclable into a trashcan. As Mr. Horne said, “it’s everybody’s role to be a steward of our land and air.”