Did you know to-go cups from your favorite cafe are not recyclable? How much energy does your building consume? How many of your co-workers carpool? The UGA Office of Sustainability works to educate us on these and many other questions, making the microcosm that is our campus community more in-tune with its environmental and stewardship responsibilities:
Zero Waste UGA, an effort to send 65 percent less waste to the landfill in 2020 than the campus did in 2010, which is part of UGA's Strategic Plan.
Through this and other sustainability programs, UGA diverts about 10,000 cubic yards of organic material from the landfill each year. Food scraps from the compost bins ultimately go to the Bioconversion Center on Whitehall Road to become compost. After about a year, facilities management can use the scrap mixture to enhance the soil on campus grounds.
About 30 buildings on campus participate in the departmental composting program, which usually collects between 200 and 300 pounds of food waste a week. In 2016, 6,000 pounds of compost were collected from departments across campus.
Always ask what you can do to contribute to less waste on campus and in your community. The Office of Sustainability can help units address specific problems, goals and initiatives to lessen the impact of our energy use and consumption. That's something we can all commit to. Give them a call.