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March 26, 2009

OC and UBCO’s trash audited

by okanagancollegesustainability

In October 2008, UBC Okanagan and Okanagan College Enviro clubs challenged each other to an assessment of what is in the college’s trash. That day, 72% of the trash thrown out at UBC Okanagan was not garbage, compared to 70% at Okanagan College.

Okanagan College produced about half the amount of garbage (5542 litres) of UBCO in one day, but had similar results when it came to waste streams. 30% of the trash was actual garbage, but 5% was styrofoam, which was diverted and recycled through a private partnership. 37% of the trash was recyclable and 33% was compostable.

Some of the strange items destined for the garbage included unopened chocolate bars, a pair of work boots, large reusable banners, electronics and various metallic items. A large number of returnable bottles and cans were also pulled from the trash.

The active role these students have taken shows the community the importance of being responsible for what we consume and the waste we create. Our actions and attitudes must change to build a healthier, more sustainable community. Students at both campuses showed incredible enthusiasm and passion and had a fantastic time  during audit

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