Campus Goes Dumpster Diving

By R. Stickney
|  Monday, Apr 19, 2010  |  Updated 3:18 PM PDT
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Campus Goes Dumpster Diving

NBCSanDiego

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People went through the garbage from buildings on the campus of University of California San Diego but they weren’t looking for copies of controversial contracts with former Vice Presidential candidates demanding bendy straws.

Monday was the annual Trash Sort at UCSD where staff and volunteers collect trash from resident hall dumpsters to determine which houses are recycling and which are not in a friendly competition.

“The more recyclables they have in this trash, the worse they did because all of those should’ve gone through the recycled containers,” said Maggie Souder, Sustainability Coordinator at UCSD.

Undergraduate student Hilary Wilhelm works for housing and dining said the exercise is an eye opener for students. “They’re able to see it and it gets the message across easier,” she said.

Sorters spotted all sorts of items in the trash that shouldn’t be from plastics, tin cans and soda cans to phone books and paperback books.

Even so, they weren’t too surprised by what they found.

“We’re seeing I think a better job this year,” Souder said. “We’re glad to see the message is getting out there.”

Wilhelm said along with the Trash Sort, they are planning a composting education program to inform students what to do with the food waste they’re tossing in the waste baskets around campus.
 

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