The UofA collected 837 pounds of electronic waste as a part of its annual Recyclemania competition, which ended March 29, according to the interim manager for the UofA Bookstore Computer Store.
This annual event encourages universities across the country to change the way they deal with waste by organizing recycling drives and competitions. This year’s Recyclemania took place between Feb. 2 and March 29.
Universities that participate compete to recycle the most waste. The UofA won the categories of Waste Minimization and Grand Champion in the Southeastern Conference in 2011.
Smaller competitions were organized on campus to encourage students to get involved.
The residence hall event will award a “Hydration Station,” a water fountain with a special spout to refill water bottles, to the residence hall that recycles the most paper, cans and plastic bottles.
The registered student organization event will award $350 to the winning organization and all participating students from each organization will be put in a raffle to win $100.
“We had about a dozen RSOs participate this year,” said Carlos Ochoa, director of the Office for Sustainability. “This is about the same as last year.”
The UofA also organized two drives that were open to the entire campus, including book and electronics collections.
“There are many different reasons to recycle electronics,” Ochoa said. “The electronics recycled through the bookstore are disposed of in a socially and environmentally friendly fashion. These aren’t going to prisons to be disassembled. These are being taken care of in a manner in which people will not be exposed to toxic wastes.”
Some students are appreciative of the initiatives that the UofA participates in, but hope there will be more publicity about the events.
“Recycling initiatives on campus show that the university is considering the importance of taking care of our environment,” said junior Lauren Struzik. “I haven’t had any electronics to recycle yet, but I would use the Bookstore. I just don’t think it’s a widely known fact that the drive was happening.”
Students are encouraged to continue to recycle old electronics at the Computer Store, the interim manager said.