Category: Sustainability News (page 1 of 36)

Spring into Meatless Mondays

Eco Reps Meatless Monday Title Photo

Sometimes, it can feel like there isn’t much to be done as an individual seeking to combat the state of our environment, particularly as courses gear up and overwhelm students with reading, problem sets, papers, exams, and stress. If you are feeling a little lost or can’t find your place in the environmental movement, or you just want to talk to really cool, interesting, and motivated Jumbos, be sure to stop by Carm and Dewick between 5pm and 7pm on Monday nights. That’s right, this semester Eco-Reps are back at it again with the Meatless Mondays.

If you’ve ever walked into the dining hall around this time before, you have probably noticed a table of eager Eco-Reps asking you if you’ll eat meatless tonight. This semester, be sure to say hello and talk to them about any of your environmental interests, comments, questions, or concerns. Eco-Reps are a wonderful resource to us students on campus. They are here to help and support us through our semester in a more sustainable way. Each week, they will be talking to us about different environmental themes, including topics in sustainable agriculture. Take this opportunity to learn more about ways that you can make a difference in your daily choices!

 

Meet Your Eco Reps CTA

Medford/Somerville Waste Station Checklist

Recently, you may have noticed some big changes in recycling on the Medford and Somerville campuses: all recycling is now mixed, meaning there are now only types two bins at waste stations across campus: trash and recycling! 

Research shows that an effective way to capture more recyclables is to pair trash containers with recycling containers. Your waste station should have BOTH types of bin listed below:  

Gray trash bin with white “landfill” label 

Gray recycling bin with: 

  • Blue “mixed recycling” label 
  • Light blue bag 
  • Blue UFO-shaped lid 
Complete waste station

Now, that’s a good looking waste station!

If the waste station in your dorm, office, or classroom doesn’t look like the photo above, please submit a work order through Maximo.   

During the transition to mixed recycling, Tufts strategically reduced the number of waste stations in each building. This helps with efficiency (regarding the time to empty bins) and sustainability (reducing the number of plastic liners we use reduces our overall impact!). Your original central waste station may have been moved to another area on your floor or removed entirely during the transition, however, please do not move any waste receptacles. If you feel that an error has been made with your waste station please submit a work order through Maximo and contact recycle@tufts.edu with specific questions.  

 

Apply to Live in the Green House!

This sustainability-themed housing unit is in its third year of existence! The suite is located in Latin Way, with 10 available spots.
Living in the Green House is similar to living in one of the existing special interest houses. Instead of focusing on a language or religion, it is meant to be an intentional community of people who are all interested in issues surrounding sustainability. The house is filled with student of a broad range of interests and levels of background knowledge, from those who started their high school environmental club to those just beginning their journey. Everyone in the house is required to either work on sustainability-related research or work with the Sustainable Action Squad (a group of student dedicated to catalyzing environmental changes on campus), and generally be involved in the sustainability movement at Tufts.

The Green House is also intended as a focal point for the environmental community on the Tufts campus. It brings Eco-friendly students, organizations, and faculty together to promote the spread of knowledge and passion for sustainable living. The house provides a living space for environmentally interested students, and a meeting place for the larger Tufts community. The goals of the founders of the house included bringing together people with similar interests in a living environment, fostering the environmental community on campus, providing an opportunity for residents to learn new ways to live sustainably alongside their housemates, providing space for environmental groups to host programs for the entire Tufts community, and bringing together various environmentally focused groups on campus and encouraging cooperation between them.

There will be a free dinner at the Green House on Monday, February 6th from 6:00-8:00 PM in the Latin Way D250s. 

The application is due February 6th at midnight.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at TuftsSustainabilityHouse@gmail.com

UEP Spring 2017 Colloquium Series

UEP’s Colloquium series brings together students, faculty, affiliates, alumni, and friends to share, learn, and inspire. See the dates for the Spring semester series below

Screen Shot 2017-02-01 at 3.56.30 PM

New Year, New Lid! Campus recycling is now mixed!

Have you noticed anything different about your favorite campus waste station?

Screen Shot 2017-01-25 at 9.45.33 PM

Recycling at the Medford/Somerville campus is now mixed! Boston and Grafton will make the switch in Summer 2017.

Recycling on the Medford/Somerville campus is now MIXED! Mixed recycling means all the materials that you currently recycle will remain the same but will not need to be separated. All paper, cardboard, plastics, glass, and metal can be mixed together in any blue bins with new UFO-shaped lids! We will keep this blog updated regularly with new information about mixed recycling. You can subscribe to regular mixed recycling email updates here.

Please remember the following when recycling:

  1. Dump out liquids.
  2. Wipe out messy food containers.

If you’re on the SMFA campus, you can expect to see this same type of waste station starting next week.  If you’re on the Boston or Grafton campus, you will be transitioned to mixed recycling during the summer months.

mixedlid

The new UFO-shaped mixed recycling lids allow you to dispose of items in a variety of shapes (e.g. bottles and cardboard).

Change is hard, but there is no need to panic! Mixed recycling is simple and easy. New mixed recycling stations provide the campus community with two primary options: recycle or landfill (along with existing composting for food waste in many locations). Trash bins are labeled with a white “Landfill” label to help remind the campus community that the trash we discard ultimately ends up in a landfill somewhere. The blue “Mixed Recycling” label indicates that all recyclables can be mixed in one bin: paper and cardboard, plastics, glass, and metal. When in doubt, please recycle!

Making the move to mixed recycling supports Tufts’ larger plan to improve solid waste and recycling efforts in line with the President’s Campus Sustainability Council’s goal of reducing total waste by 3% per year. Every Tufts community member is asked and expected to help the university meet its waste goals by educating themselves about their campus’s move to mixed recycling. Read more about the President’s Sustainability Council goals to reduce waste here.

Frequently Asked Questions about the mixed recycling transition:

  1. What happened to the waste station next to my office?
    Waste stations have been transitioned to mixed recycling, meaning there are now only two bins at the waste station: trash and recycling. Your original central waste station may have been moved to another area on your floor during the transition, however, please do not move any waste stations. As long as you use your desk-side trash buddy, you will be able to bring your trash and recycling to a central waste station located on your floor of the building. If you have concerns, please contact recycle@tufts.edu.
  2. What does “Landfill” mean?A landfill is a facility where solid waste is taken after you throw it into the trash bin. Landfills are engineered to comply with federal regulations and keep waste dry and away from groundwater sources. Landfills are designed to bury trash — they do not help it break down at a faster rate. This means that items you send to a landfill can stay there for hundreds of years, depending on the materials. As stated in the 2013 Campus Sustainability Council Report, Tufts’ overall vision for waste is a cradle-to-cradle economy, meaning that the campus community will consider the lifecycle cost of products before purchasing them. By labeling bins with the word “Landfill” we hope to remind people about where their waste goes after it is thrown away.
  3. What goes in the “Mixed Recycling” bin? What goes in the “Landfill” bin?
    When you take the time to consider what goes in recycling versus trash, you find that most of your waste really can be recycled! For a list of accepted items, please visit the Facilities Services – Recycling & Waste Management website. We also recommend watching the video below, which explains how to recycle under the new system.

Still have questions? Please contact Facilities Services at recycle@tufts.edu.

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