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Georgia Southern University participating in 2017 RecycleMania Tournament

Center for Sustainability intern, Cortney Johnson gives President Jaimie Hebert, Ph.D., an Eagle box to collect his recycling for RecycleMania 2017.

RecycleMania, the premier collegiate recycling competition managed by Keep America Beautiful, is currently underway at Georgia Southern University, and is encouraging students to reduce, reuse, recycle and compost the most on campuses across the country.

The competition, hosted by the Center for Sustainability (CfS), kicked off on Feb. 5 and runs for a total of eight weeks through April 1. During the first week, 8,020 pounds of waste have already been recycled.

“Last year, we recycled 83,620 pounds over the eight weeks — a 9,300 pound improvement over 2015. We want to keep that upward trend going,” said Lissa Leege, director of the CfS. “Every item we recycle saves Georgia Southern money and keeps valuable materials from taking the 120 mile trip to the landfill in Dry Branch, Georgia.”

Hundreds of participating colleges and universities are competing in several categories based on the weight of recycling, food organics and waste reduction collected. Each week, schools report their data and use updated rankings to rally students and staff with educational activities, displays and other outreach efforts.

“Georgia Southern has assembled a great support team including Division of Facilities Services, CfS, Housing, Auxiliary Services and Southern Adventures to help make RecycleMania a success – now we need you! Recycle your aluminum cans in the new green bins, give your plastic bottles and cardboard a new life and purge your papers,” Leegee added.

Georgia Southern will bring back “Get Caught Green Handed” sightings this year, in which students, faculty and staff caught recycling, drinking from a reusable mug, or engaging in other sustainable behaviors will win prizes and have their photos posted on social media. Thanks to a new partnership with Tech Corner, “green-handed” winners and their catchers will be entered in a drawing to win bluetooth headphones and speakers at the end of the eight-week competition.

Back for a second year, residence halls will compete with each other to recycle the most through the residence hall recycling incentive program. The winning hall will enjoy a pizza and wings party and will be awarded a travelling RecycleMania trophy until 2018.

New this year, the CfS and Southern Adventures will host a Recycled Boat Regatta during which teams will build boats from recycled materials and race them on Lake Ruby. Teams can enter through the CfS website to compete in the regatta at 4 p.m. on March 9. Look for the Center’s lunch-time tabling events at the Union and the Library featuring spin-the-prize-wheel for recycling trivia.

“RecycleMania is an effective tool for colleges and universities to educate their students and staff about recycling and waste reduction,” said Alec Cooley, Keep America Beautiful director of recycling programs and RecycleMania’s program manager. “The program provides a fun, interactive framework for sustainability officers and student environmental groups to communicate the benefits of recycling in a way that resonates on college campuses. Most important, it helps to cultivate a new generation of recycling ambassadors and community stewards.”

RecycleMania is made possible with the generous sponsorship support of Alcoa Foundation, The Coca-Cola Company, CyclePoint® from SourceAmerica® and Rubbermaid Commercial Products®, with comprehensive program management by Keep America Beautiful. Georgia Southern’s participation in the tournament is made possible in part by Student Sustainability Fees.

Since the competition launched in 2001, millions of students from more than 760 colleges and universities have recycled and composted roughly 820 million pounds of material during the tournament timeframe. Together, tournament participants have prevented the release of nearly 2.3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, which is comparable to removing 524,600 million passenger vehicles from the road for one year.

Contact information for specific campuses is available to news media by calling 843.278.7686 or emailing helpline@recyclemaniacs.org. To learn more about RecycleMania, visit http://recyclemaniacs.org/.

About RecycleMania

The RecycleMania program is governed by a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization called RecycleMania, Inc. made up of a board of directors who are recycling and sustainability managers from participating universities. For more information, visit http://recyclemaniacs.org.

About Keep America Beautiful

At Keep America Beautiful, we want to ensure that beauty is our lasting signature. A leading national nonprofit, Keep America Beautiful inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. We envision a country where every community is a clean, green, and beautiful place to live. Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful provides the expertise, programs and resources to help people End Littering, Improve Recycling, and Beautify America’s Communities. The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 620 state and community-based Keep America Beautiful affiliates, millions of volunteers, and the support of corporate partners, municipalities, elected officials, and individuals. To donate or take action, visit kab.org. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, like us on Facebook, or view us on YouTube.

About Georgia Southern University

Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/Research University founded in 1906, offers more than 125 degree programs serving 20,673 students. Through eight colleges, the University offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs built on more than a century of academic achievement. Georgia Southern is recognized for its student-centered and hands-on approach to education. Visit GeorgiaSouthern.edu.

 

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