Residences go green

15 April 2009 | Story by Newsroom

Nicholas WiidNicholas Wiid and the Green Campus Initiative are the driving forces behind a new recycling project at self-catering residences.

The headline "Go green or go home" on a notice posted around Liesbeeck Gardens Residence summed it up.

LStudents at self-catering residences across UCT have recently been introduced to an integrated recycling system, taking heed of the three R's - reduce, reuse and recycle - as part of the university drive to go green, save energy and be "sustainable".

The project, launched on 6 April, has the backing of the Properties & Services Department, waste removal company Wasteman, cleaning staff, students, as well as wardens and sub-wardens.

The project is driven by Student Housing & Residence Life in conjunction with the Green Campus Initiative (GCI), a 900-strong organisation comprising of students and staff that aims to cut down on waste and reduce UCT's carbon footprint.

It involves recycling 'stations' consisting of two bins, one yellow-lidded for wet non-recyclables (such as left-overs) to be taken to landfills, and a green-lidded one for dry recyclables (papers, bottles, etc) to be transported to Wasteman's material recovery facility. The burden is now on students to sort their waste before placing it in the bins.

"We hope all students will support this initiative by making those two minutes of extra effort," said GCI's Nicholas Wiid, an honours student in environmental management. "A lot of time and money has gone into this project, and we are positive about its success."

John Critien, executive director of the Properties & Services Department, said recycling at residences is difficult because students mix up waste in their rooms, dumping banana peels with papers, for example.

The encouraging part of this initiative is that there is impetus from students, and my sense is that it will carry much more weight."

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