Schreiner University students, faculty and staff are committed to preserving the beautiful Texas Hill Country by reducing waste and recycling. Schreiner's student leadership team has been involved in the conception, launch and funding of Schreiner Recycles. Assistant professor of biology Dr. Chris Distel is serving as academic advisor to the students, who are staffing the program.
Schreiner Recycles has already cut the volume of waste being hauled from campus by nearly 25 percent because the campus community is sorting out recyclable materials and putting them in bins. A corps of students assists Environment Management staff by picking up the bin contents regularly and delivering it to the campus recycling center, where it is loaded onto a trailer bound for Greenstar recycling center in San Antonio.
Here are the items that Schreiner Recycles collects:
• Plastic containers (#1 through #7), which include soft drink and water bottles, detergent bottles, plastic milk cartons and more.
• Aluminum, steel and tin containers like soda cans, tuna and vegetable cans.
• Mixed paper like copy and printer paper, junk mail, magazines, cereal boxes, non-styrofoam egg cartons.
• Corrugated cardboard and boxboard, broken down and flattened. (Pizza boxes are not accepted because of food contamination.)
Please do NOT put the items below into recycle bins:
• Serving items made of paper, plastic or Styrofoam.
• Paper towels, facial tissues, toilet tissue.
• Plastic bags and packaging.
• Wax-coated paper drink containers like milk cartons.
• Food-contaminated and wet waste.
Schreiner's student recycling coordinator Alexis Sendejo
Americans use 2,500,000 plastic containers every HOUR and most of them are thrown away. Recycling plastic saves twice as much energy as burning it in an incinerator and is made into plastic lumber, clothing, flower pots, insulation for sleeping bags & ski jackets, car bumpers, fleece fabric and more.
Recycling aluminum saves about 95 percent of the energy it would take to produce aluminum from its original source, bauxite. Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a TV for three hours—or the equivalent of a half-gallon of gasoline. On the other hand, an aluminum can that is thrown away will still be a can 500 years from now. Steel products contain at least 25 percent steel scrap, which requires 75 percent less energy to produce than “virgin” steel. A 60-watt light bulb can be run for more than a day on the amount of energy saved by recycling one pound of steel.
If all U.S. newspapers were recycled, about 250,000,000 trees would be saved.
Mixed paper is further sorted. Office paper, which has long fibers, is worth much more than cereal boxes, which has shorter fibers. Each ton of paper recycled can save 17 trees, 380 gallons of oil, three cubic yards of landfill space, 4,000 kilowatts of energy, and 7,000 gallons of water, which representing a 64 percent energy savings, a 58 percent water savings, and 60 pounds less of air pollution.
Corrugated cardboard is one of the easiest, most valuable and sought after materials to recycle. It has multilayer construction with a wavy middle layer. Three tons of trees are used to create one ton of virgin cardboard.
*The information in Recycling Fact is collected from a variety of sources including the Environmental Protection Agency website (www.epa.gov), Recycling Revolution (www.recycling-revolution.com), and www.dosomething.org.