Want an excuse for a break? Why not bin it?

Courtney Duncan
Wednesday 14 September 2022

Legs numb? Eyes glazed? Getting twitchy for a break, but your water-bottle or coffee cup is full and lunch is over? Well… boy do we have the solution for you! It all comes down to our recent initiative called Bin The Bin; this way you can stretch your legs and recycle your waste!

With concern about climate change now raised to emergency levels by local and national governments, the University is re-evaluating its approach to waste, identifying ways to increase the quantity and diversity of recycled materials whilst simultaneously reducing the volume of general waste sent to land fill or incineration.

One part of the University’s strategy has been to introduce new centralised style of bins that will support and promote the separation of waste streams. The first style will be for general waste, clean dry mixed recyclables (cardboard, cans, tins, plastic bottles and drink cartons) and paper. The second will be supplied with an additional bin for food waste.

Rather than having smaller bins dotted underneath each desk, our centralised bins will be located around the building at accessible locations such as corridors, kitchens and common rooms. The cleaning staff will maintain the bins and ensure they are regularly emptied in the same fashion as the collection system for our current bins and recycling facilities.

In parallel to the roll out of the new bins, our office bins, both general waste and paper recycling, will be removed. We will be required to take our waste to one of the communal bins for disposal.

This new system of communal collection points has been championed by the Universities School Sustainability Reps, supported by the Environmental Sustainability Board and successfully demonstrated in a number of university buildings such as Medicine, Physics and the Arts Building. Many other universities have trialled this system and have seen significant increases in recycling rates.

Taking waste to the bins is an excellent excuse to get that short break from your computer screen!

We are very much at the start of the process. Until we have lived with the system, we won’t understand exactly how best to optimise bin type and location. The University has a supply of bins, so if more are needed, they can be supplied! If you need anything let us know at [email protected].

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