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Solid Waste Minimization

Our Goal: 
By expanding recycling & composting programs, promoting the  reuse and repurposing of durable items, and thoughtful purchasing practices, Colorado College is targeting a 90% waste diversion rate by 2020.
The associated reduction in greenhouse gas emissions is 1320 MTCO2e.

We participate in Recyclemania!

Recyclemania is a friendly, nation-wide competition to promote waste reduction on campuses. Colorado College participates in Recyclemania to foster behaviors that both minimize waste and increase the campus's waste diversion rate.

To kick it off, students display “Trash  Peak” at the beginning of second semester. This event features a 30 cubic yard mountain of trash on Worner Quad, representative of the amount of solid waste that CC generates in a single day. During lunch, student organizers conduct an audit, dividing Trash Peak into reusable items, recyclables, compostables, and trash.

Trash is what we send to our landfills – anything that can’t be reused, repaired, recycled, or composted. Trash generated at CC is dumped in the Colorado Springs Landfill approximately 15 miles east of downtown.

What is the link to carbon neutrality?

Decomposition of waste in landfills produces methane, a greenhouse gas 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Prior to 2009, the waste we landfilled each year was responsible for generating close to 1500 MTCO2e (metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.)

Waste haulers use fossil fuels to transport trash around town and out to the landfill.

Energy is required to produce goods and services, in material extraction, manufacturing, and transportation. Every item we toss out has some embodied energy associated with it, and replacing items that make their way to the landfill most often requires additional fossil fuel resources.