Recycling at UALR
Few people realize how much paper actually is recycled at UALR every month. Between 2002 and 2005, UALR recycled an average of 10 tons of paper per month over a 12-month period. To put that in perspective, an African bull elephant can weigh between six and eight tons.
More impressively, all of this paper is recycled by UALR faculty, staff, and students at the point of disposal because the UALR custodial staff does not do any separating. Some of this paper gets collected via the 108 blue bins devoted to paper that are placed all over campus - in elevator lobbies, copy rooms, some classrooms, offices, and computer labs. Others get collected in campuswide drives such as the Recycle Your Phone Book drive and still more gets recycled through different disposal channels, such as the corrugated cardboard. Still more gets recycled via the saddle baskets located in select offices around campus. The income from the recycling is used to fund the recycling bins on campus; currently there are 268 bins on UALR’s campus.
UALR takes part in a state-wide paper program that recycles paper such as white paper, colored paper, card stock, unpadded manila envelopes, newspapers and comic pages, soft-bound books such as phone books, manuals and other paperbacks, corrugated cardboard, and paper ream wrappers.
Paper recycling is just a small part of UALR’s overall waste stream. A trash audit done in 2007 revealed that paper is less than 2 percent of our waste stream, but almost 12 percent of our recycling. Styrofoam makes up .71 percent of the waste stream, but is 4.81 percent of our recyclables, while PET/HDPE plastics (soda bottles) are 5.64 percent of the waste stream, but 38 percent of our recyclables. The winner in terms of recycling, though, is cardboard. Only 7.4 percent of the waste stream, cardboard makes up over 50 percent of our recyclables.