The University of Georgia Costa Rica 2014-2015 Sustainability Report UGA Costa Rica 2014 - 2015 Sustainability Report - Page 39

61+20+1321L 2014 – 2015 UGACR Solid Waste Audit Organic (fed to pigs) 21.04% Trash (to landfill) 13.36% Cardboard (recycled) 1.29% Paper (recycled) 1.01% Glass (recycled) 0.71% Plastic (recycled) 0.33% Aluminum (recycled) 0.04% Organic (compost) 62.13% Uneaten food at the dining hall is reused as food for the pigs at the stables or compost in the organic garden. When reduction and reuse are not enough, UGACR relies on recycling. Recycling bins are present in all common areas, in addition to all guest rooms. Recyclable goods are stored until enough has been collected to warrant a trip to the Central Valley. Electronic waste is recycled through a Costa Rican company, HOPE Proyectos Ambientales, and batteries from radios and flashlights are returned to Athens, Georgia for recycling. The nearest recycling center is in Puntarenas, and if families in San Luis want to divert their recyclable goods from the landfill, they must pay for a recycling service. Consequently, recycling rates in San Luis are typically low. UGA Costa Rica, in coordination with the Athens-Clarke County Recycling Division and UGA’s Office of Sustainability, are working to alleviate this problem. Campus employees are given bags made from recycled materials to collect their recyclable goods from home and bring them back to campus to be transported with UGA Costa Rica’s existing recyclables, free of charge. Every year, UGACR carries out a solid waste audit. For one week, waste is collected and carefully analyzed based on the following categories: paper, cardboard, plastic, glass, aluminum, landfill trash, organic waste sent to the pigs, and organic waste composted at the farm. One of the highlights of the 2014 – 2015 solid waste audit was the low volume of trash sent to the landfill, representing a mere 13.46% of all solid waste. That number now stands as a record low among all solid waste audits performed on campus. Additionally, the percentage of organic, reusable waste was the highest it has ever been at 83.17%, meaning the campus is reusing as many materials as it ever has. All in all, UGA Costa Rica remains on the proper trajectory towards minimizing production of landfill waste and increasing the rate of reusing waste. 2014 – 2015 Sustainability Report 39