University of Iowa seeing hopeful signs from its no-sort recycling program
"We're very happy about how that is working out," Liz Christiansen, director of the University of Iowa office of sustainability, told the news source. "We know those numbers can be affected by many things, and we know these are early results, but we feel sort-free is easier for people to participate in."
In the past at the university and the surrounding community, residents were told to separate their recyclable material - plastic, cardboard, paper and tin - into separate receptacles. The community has simplified the process and believes that it can hit its goal of 60 percent of its waste diverted from local landfills by 2020.
Before the switch to the sort-free system, recycling rates hovered between 25 and 40 percent, so the early returns from the change have been overwhelmingly positive. Best of all, the University of Iowa could potentially save money on its program if enough material is diverted to recycling. This would reduce transportation costs and ease the burden on local trash haulers. All in all, the new program looks like an overwhelmingly positive step forward and hopefully other communities will take notice of this recycling success story.