Waste Audit – or Richmond and recycling

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  3. Waste Audit – or Richmond and recycling
Last week my Environmental Studies class participated in a waste audit. Basically what this meant was that we had to look through some trash (with plenty of protection gear, don’t worry) and see what wast thrown away though it could have been recycled. University Facilities decided to waste audit the trash in Lora Robins, the dorm where I live.
At first, we were instructed what to do
and someone was asked to volunteer and weigh everything we sort. I was the one who volunteered. But what I didn’t know at the time was that the people who weigh have to stay and wait for filled containers all the time, so I didn’t get to actually sort. I was a little disappointed, but I still had plenty of fun around the weighting balance.
So while everyone was meticulously sorting for recyclable items,
I and my “assistant” were in charge of keeping track of everything.
Because this waste audit occurred in the middle of the Forum, everyone who was stopping by could see us:
A few people who liked the idea even joined us in the fun for a couple of minutes.
My task was to measure not only the recyclable items picked from trash and then the actual trash left behind, but also what was actually recycled in Lora Robins. Comparing the results of what was recycled versus what could have been recycled, we got to some pretty alarming conclusions:
Those percentages mean that just a little bit of what could have been recycled was actually recycled, so the people in our dorm are not too concerned about recycling. I hope this will change soon!