1. Think reusable: Carry reusable drink containers with you when you’re going out, so you don’t have to buy plastic water bottles and styrofoam coffee cups. You can also reduce waste at home by using washable napkins and plates, rather than buying paper and plastic dinnerware.
2. Reduce the amount of paper you use: Write on both sides of the paper when you’re taking notes in class. If you don’t have to turn notes in, use scratch paper rather than brand new pieces. You’ll help the planet and save money on notebooks.
3. Recycle as much as possible
4. Don’t drive when you don’t have to: Walk, ride your bike, take the bus or carpool whenever possible. You’ll save on gas and reduce pollution.
2011 Trash Awareness Day Results
In fall 2013, Kevin Grove, chair of the Sustainability Committee, plans to take out the trash– and take inventory of it.
In 2011, the Sustainability Committee and Sustainability Club spearheaded a Trash Day at Central Oregon Community College. On that day, the committee and club worked with volunteers from the staff and student body to find out exactly what was being thrown out at COCC.
“The overall volume surprised me,” said Grove. “The amount of materials there that didn’t need to be thrown away was overwhelming.”
Grove hopes to see an improvement when he hosts a similar event in 2013.
“There’s a lot of discussion right now to see what measures we can take to reduce our amount of waste,” said Grove.
The main effort so far, according to Grove, is raising awareness on what can be recycled. Since the 2011 Trash Day, more effort has been made to draw attention to recycling bins and let people know what can be deposited in them. Grove also hopes to reduce food waste via composting by partnering with the Garden Club in the future.
What can be recycled?
(according to the Environmental Center of Central Oregon)
Tin and alluminum
Grass and brush clippings