WASHINGTON, D.C. (Jan. 19, 2017) – While Clemson University recently defeated the University of Alabama in the College Football Playoff National Championship, football fans at Louisiana State University could also claim a championship of their own having been crowned the overall winners of the 2016 GameDay Recycling Challenge (GDRC), the national collegiate football recycling competition.
Louisiana State was the overall champion in the Total Recycling division for the second year in a row, with 78,200 pounds of material recycled, composted or donated. Eastern Washington University and Ohio University tied as the national winners in the Diversion Rate category (recycling, plus organics composting and recovery as a percent of total trash) at a 95.6 percent rate.
“LSU receiving back-to-back GameDay Recycling Challenge awards can be directly attributed to the efforts of Campus Sustainability and our students, faculty and staff to become leaders among its peers in higher education sustainability and recycling,” said Tammy Millican, executive director for facility and property oversight at LSU.
The GDRC pitted 78 colleges and universities in a fun and friendly competition designed to engage college football fans to see who could recycle the most and reduce the most waste. The competition reached 12,469,765 fans at 243 games, based on reported stadium attendance numbers. Participating schools recycled or composted nearly 2.7 million pounds of game-day waste during the fall season, which broke down to recycling nearly 2.2 million pounds of bottles, cans, paper, cardboard and other materials, in addition to composting or recovering nearly 500,000 pounds of organic materials, including pre- and post-consumer food waste and compostable serviceware. This was a 4.8 percent increase over the total pounds recycled during the 2015 season.
“During the 2016 GameDay Recycling Challenge, Eastern Washington University built on previous years’ work to continue to educate tailgaters to make our waste diversion a more successful reality,” said Scott Buck, transportation supervisor, facilities services, Eastern Washington University. “Our work makes a difference not only for fans attending our games, but also in our community. Through GameDay, we engage our fans and community in an effort to expose them to the importance of waste reduction, recycling and composting, and we are proud of our 95.6 percent diversion rate!”
The GDRC ranks participating schools based on the quantity of recyclables, food organics and other materials diverted from the landfill at college football stadiums and tailgating areas. During the competition, schools tracked weights for individual games, with the totals used to rank schools nationally and by athletic conference.
The complete list of national and conference winners is available on the GDRC website.
The GameDay Recycling Challenge is produced through a partnership of the College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC), Keep America Beautiful, RecycleMania, Inc., and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s WasteWise.
About the College & University Recycling Coalition
The College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC) is a membership-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to advance recycling and sustainable materials management at colleges and universities. CURC represents a vibrant community of recycling professionals in higher education on over 800 college campuses across the United States. CURC members connect with each other through an active email listserv and at gatherings in conjunction with state and national conferences. CURC provides support to collegiate recycling programs through technical assistance, education, and training, including a webinar series, annual workshops, and the development of best-practices manuals and toolkits. For more information, visit curc3r.org.
About Environmental Protection Agency’s Sustainable Materials Management Program
Rethink. Think Beyond Waste doesn’t just mean making good decisions about the end of a product’s life cycle (recycling, composting, energy recovery, and landfilling). It refers to sustainable materials management or SMM – the use and reuse of materials in the most productive and sustainable way across their entire life cycle. SMM conserves resources, reduces waste, slows climate change, has significant economic benefits, and minimizes the environmental impacts of the materials we use. Learn more about SMM and what EPA is doing at https://www.epa.gov/smm/basic.htm.
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 in which 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.
RecycleMania launched in 2001 as a friendly challenge between Ohio University and Miami University to increase recycling on their campuses. The contest has expanded from two schools in 2001 to nearly 400 colleges and universities in 2016 spanning 49 states, the District of Columbia, and Canada. Over an eight-week period, campuses compete to see which institution can recycle the most and waste the least. The RecycleMania program is governed by a non-profit 501c (3) organization called RecycleMania, Inc. made up of a board of directors who are recycling and sustainability managers from a variety of participating universities. For complete competition details, visit RecycleMania.org.