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CMC Talks Trash

October 12, 2010

Ellie Beckett
CMC Talks Trash

Recently there has been growing concern within the CMC community about how trashy our school is becoming. This Wednesday, students will express their discontent by getting down and dirty on the Appleby lawn. Do I have your attention? Good. There is no debate that CMC is a trashy place. According to a study done by the Robert’s Environmental Center last Spring, over 35% of material thrown in the dumpsters could have been recycled. To show just how much we waste, SPEAR (Students Promoting Environmental Awareness and Responsibility, CMC's environmental club) is hosting Trash on the Lawn Day this Wednesday.

Members of SPEAR will collect trash from CMC's dorms, offices, classrooms, and other buildings; the members will then dump the trash onto a tarp in front of Appleby. Throughout the afternoon, club members and anyone who wants to lend a hand will sift through the waste and sort it into piles: recyclables, compostables, special recyclables (i.e. batteries) and contaminated recyclables (items that could have been recycled but no longer can be due to contamination from other trash). The end result will be a striking visual of exactly how much recyclable material we unnecessarily discard at CMC.

A campus-wide myth is that we do not actually recycle here. People swear that they have witnessed housekeepers dumping the contents of a recycling bin into the trash. This myth is both true and false. If a housekeeper pulls out a bag of recycling and can see non recyclables in it, the entire bag is thrown into the trash. The recycling center can only accept a limited amount of contaminated recycling. Housekeeping does not have the time to sift through and sort each bin, so it is our responsibility to do it properly.

All are invited to help sort trash, or simply stop by with waste to add to the pile, from 11:00 to 4:00 pm on Wednesday. Added perks: there will be a limited supply of eco-friendly stickers available, and you can add your name into a drawing for reusable a water bottle.

After the event, SPEAR will be posting a reference list of recyclable and non-recyclable items on their blog. Check back throughout the year to read short articles about what SPEAR's environmental activities and causes. For you twotters out there, follow them on Twitter at SPEAR_CMC.  SPEAR meets Tuesdays at 9 PM in the Wohlford lounge; all are welcome to join.

According to SPEAR president, sophomore Katie Browning, SPEAR is also campaigning around No to Prop 23 in the upcoming election, working with the school and other students to plan a community garden, and planning a green-themed party.

So CMC, let's show SPEAR and Mother Earth some love by being a bit less trashy and remembering that valuable lesson from kindergarten: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.

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