Florida Tech has switched to a dual stream recycling program in order to curb thousands of dollars in contamination fines from incorrect recycling.
Quinn Duffy, the university sustainability officer, said dual stream process uses multiple bins instead of one bin for all recycled material and can help to make it a simple process for students to use since it eliminates the guessing of what is recyclable.
According to Duffy, Florida Tech has been working on switching to a better recycling system since they had been fined $18,300 for contamination over the past year.
“As it stands right now, we have switched to a dual stream system which is actually a form of simplification to avoid contamination fines from waste management,” Duffy said.
A new dual stream system was implemented in August after a pilot program was conducted this past spring.
According to Duffy, the fines from the trial period were decreased by $1,500, meaning that the program has been effective.
Duffy added that they incorporated this new system since the single stream bins are large and open.
In addition, the sustainability officer also emphasized that students have difficulty knowing what can and can’t be recycled in them, leading to contamination.
The new system is supposed to be a more intuitive way to recycle. Duffy said, “The blue bins are aluminum and plastic cans and bottles, and the green bins are paper and cardboard and everything else that is going to go to the landfill.”
The Student Organization for Sustainability Action focuses on these changes from a student perspective.
Taylor Greene, a senior in sustainability, is the president of SOSA. She said SOSA has been involved with Duffy in implementing the new dual stream bins and helped to set them up last Earth Day.
“We’ve really been working on how to fix our recycling issue on campus,” Greene said.
Duffy said that campus has a three-year plan to remove all of the old bins and replace them with the new and improved dual system bins that are permanent and can help meet the needs of students.
In order to keep making sustainable changes to campus, Duffy said it was important that students keep asking Facilities for changes and the correct information.
“They should keep pushing,” Duffy said. “Keep pushing for greener things on campus. Ask for improvements when they see them. The campus is here for them.”