2013-14 FY Annual Recycling Report

Radford University continues to strive in waste reduction, reusing products, and maximizing all areas of recycling. This fiscal year, RU’s overall recycling rate equaled 50.16 %. The university’s three main areas of recycling resulted in container recycling at 20 tons, mixed paper recycling at 78 tons, and corrugated cardboard at 85 tons. Overall recyclables in all categories totaled 1450 tons. Solid wastes equaled 1440 tons.

This Year's Highlights

Fall 2013 New Student Move-In

Cardboard drop sites were designated outside all residence halls; each site was identified with a banner type sign. Cardboard totaling 7.47 tons for just that weekend was hauled to a cardboard compactor for recycling and transported.   


RU continues to partner with Creative Recycling Systems in electronic waste (e-waste) recycling and recycled e-waste totaling approx. 6 tons for the year

RecycleMania 2014  

RU competed in the national recycling competition called “RecycleMania” for the sixth consecutive year and achieved the highest recycling total of 95,160 lbs. in 8 weeks with a cumulative competition recycling rate of 18.58 %, ranking 160 of 461 schools nationwide. This competition serves as a catalyst to refresh existing recycling habits and introduce recycling to new participants.

Waste Audit

This year RU conducted its annual event called waste audit. On Tuesday, April 22nd, student volunteers and sustainability staff worked together to conduct a one day waste audit. The results of the audit are intended to identify lost recycling opportunities, i.e., recyclable items being thrown away and opportunities to strengthen the current waste and recycling program. The Moffet Quad was chosen for the audit and student volunteers from various organizations including Greek Life assisted by separating recyclables from trash and weighing the results. Of the two residence halls in the Quad, Ingles Hall took top honors by discarding the lowest percentage of recyclables in the waste stream which equaled 33 %, while the other halls produced close to high percentages.  The results were eye opening and educational to the students who participated.

Give and Go 2014

Every year Radford University diverts tons of reusable products from local landfills during the May Move out Week. The give-away received a boost this year-- RU teamed up with Keep America Beautiful and Goodwill Industries of the Valleys for Give and Go 2014, a program that helped RU's 3,000-plus campus residents lighten their loads for the end-of-semester trip home. 10,856 lbs. of clothes, food, small appliances, and more were diverted from the landfill. There was a 12% increase in the number of donations received compared to 2013 move-out.

Tour of the VOLVO Plant

Similar to RU, Volvo’s NRV plant, the largest Volvo truck manufacturing plant in the world, has a goal of becoming carbon neutral.  By attending this private guided tour, participants will gain a better understanding how Volvo’s 1.6 million square foot facility located on nearly 300 acres is pursuing its sustainability goal including the waste reduction processes.  The Zero Landfill Program represents that 100% of production related waste is reused, recycled, composted, or used as waste-to-energy (W2E). Additionally, participants will learn more about Volvo’s renewable energy efforts including a 10KW wind turbine, several 2800w solar panels, and three electric car charging stations.

Recycling Bins from Keep America Beautiful

Keep America Beautiful received more than 1,027 applications for the bin grants. 51 communities and 43 colleges will be receiving nearly 4,500 recycling bins. RU is one of three higher education institutions to receive a grant. Recipients were chosen by Keep America Beautiful based on criteria that includes "the extent of need, recycling experience and ability to sustain the program in the future," according to a KAB news release about the grant program. The grant will provide 50 new plastic general purpose bins to campus before the beginning of the academic year which will be placed at RU's athletics facilities, such as the Dedmon Center, Cupp Stadium and the baseball, softball and tennis facilities.

Construction Projects

120 tons - Aggregate/Fill generated on campus and reused (one time) to serve as a gravel base under the Hurlburt Plaza pavers

360 tons - Co-Mingled Recyclable Materials from Fitness & Wellness Center

208 tons - Co-Mingled Recyclable Materials from Center for the Sciences

272 tons - Concrete from Center for the Sciences

11.57 tons – Wood recycled from Washington Hall

Miscellaneous Events

Other recycling events and opportunities this year included America Recycles Day (ARD), Recycleathon, Highlander fest, Club Fair Day, Sustainability Movies Series, Shred-a-thon, Office Clean-Out, GreekMania, Graduation day and numerous sporting events at the Dedmon Center and Cupp Stadium.   

Closing Remarks

Radford University closes out yet another successful year in recycling.  RU continues to evaluate operations and is working on getting outdoor recycling stations installed across various locations of campus, working with local facility for composting program at dining halls and plans to enter into a contractual agreement with a local vendor to bring mixed paper and mixed containers to various markets.  Going forward, RU plans to continue to identify and exploit new initiatives and innovations in recycling.  Our ultimate goal is to continue to enhance and maintain sustainable practices and make a positive impact on global efforts to green our planet.  Be sure to sure to check out the RU Recycling website and RU SustainABILITY Facebook and Sustainable RU Twitter pages for more information too!

Download the full PDF version of the 2013-14 FY Annual Recycling Report.