Missouri University of Science and Technology recycling program paying dividends

The campus recycling program at Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) has become one of the institution's most viable ways of reducing its costs. According to MST.edu, since the implementation of the program in 2009, the college has reduced its waste disposal costs by 30 percent, which will save nearly $41,000 each year. Using a combination of expanded recycling receptacles in public and academic areas, the school was able to drastically improve its waste handling capability and turn that savings into a positive for the school.

In 2009, the recycling project was started by a group of students and teachers called Missouri S&T's Green Campus Committee, who began monitoring the amount of solid waste that was being generated on campus. The group has monitored the progress of the expended recycling program by performing regular waste audits - some of these studies are even a fixture of the curriculum in Solid Waste Management, which is offered by Missouri S&T. Even the new recycling bins are made from 100 percent recycled plastic and have been placed in various residential and communal buildings. The project was funded by a grant from the Department of Natural Resources.

What's remarkable about the new recycling program is that while the college's population has increased by 10 percent since 2007, the school has still reduced the amount of recyclable material in the waste stream from 37 percent in 2007 to only 20 percent in 2011. The initiative has already begun to reduce the college's overall expenses and has helped to spread a vital message about the importance of recycling. Best of all, the program arose from the concerns of students and teachers who did their part to create a greener community.