RMC Group

Information about RMC Group

Published on January 11, 2008

Author: Tommaso

Source: authorstream.com

Content

RMC Waste Reduction Group:  RMC Waste Reduction Group ENST 302 Spring 2006 Elliott DeRemer Meredith Gray Melody Yenn Claire Sudolski Goal and Focus of Group:  Goal and Focus of Group Our group focused on recycling, waste reduction, and sustainability awareness issues involving Willy’s Pub We attempted to change things by putting more recycling bins in pub and instituting an educational ad campaign to encourage recycling Glass Recycling Information:  Glass Recycling Information In addition to preventing the creation of extra waste for every new container made, recycling also helps avoid many of the costs of material extraction, manufacture, and waste disposal. Glass, because its structure does not deteriorate with multiple uses, can be recycled indefinitely. For every metric tonne of glass that we recycle, we preserve an additional 1.2 metric tonnes of virgin raw material from extraction for the creation of new glass. This includes 1,300 pounds of sand, 433 pounds of soda ash, 433 pounds of limestone, and 151 pounds of feldspar. Benefits of Recycling:  Benefits of Recycling In the UK, the glass industry uses 8,611,000,000 kilowatt hours annually in producing glass, and the fossil fuels used in the factory furnaces produce 1.8 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide. By recycling glass, the energy required by the furnaces is reduced, and approximately 700 fewer pounds of carbon dioxide are produced per ton of glass melted. A relative 10% increase in recycled crushed glass (“cullet”) reduces particulates by 8%, sulfur oxides by 10%, and nitrogen oxides by 4%. An Alternative – Refillable Bottles:  An Alternative – Refillable Bottles Refillable bottles used to be the norm. Refillable bottles weigh 10.5 ounces, as opposed to one-way bottles, at 5.9 ounces. Each bottle can be used 20-50 times before it is worn out and recycled. Using one refillable bottle 25 times, rather than 25 one-way bottles, saves 93% more glass, consumes 93% less energy, and requires the handling of 96% fewer bottles as solid waste. Houston’s Recycling Efforts:  Houston’s Recycling Efforts Houston recycles 5% of its municipal waste stream. Compare this to Austin, which recycles 28.5%. The typical American creates almost 1600 pounds of trash each year. If Houston, including Rice, was recycling as much as Austin, this would divert 376 pounds of waste per person, per year. In our city, with a population of roughly two million people, this is a total of 752 million pounds of waste avoided per year. Per Capita daily trash production in Houston/Galveston area is 7.09 pounds, compared to the national average of 4.3 pounds. At this rate, the area’s 21 landfills will be full by the year 2013 Rice’s Recycling Efforts:  Rice’s Recycling Efforts This year, Rice participated in Recyclemania and finished in the upper half of the standings out of 87 universities. There is still a lack of awareness among the student population, and a general feeling of apathy when it comes to recycling. Student perception is that the custodial staff does not actually recycle. In the year 2005, Rice diverted 15.86%, or 341 tons, of its total waste stream for recycling. If Rice could make a reasonable improvement in its recycling – up to 25%, for instance – we could divert an additional 197 tons of material per year, 3 tons of which would be glass. Perceived Problems at RMC:  Perceived Problems at RMC Recycling at pub is not visible or easily accessible Recycling areas in the upstairs of the RMC are not fully utilized, and are often hard to find Pub currently uses #6 plastic cups, which is not recyclable in Houston Ad Campaign:  Ad Campaign Our goal was to create more prominent and permanent signage to promote recycling and increase people’s awareness of recycling opportunities at the RMC We created two separate campaigns – one for pub, and one for the upstairs We also replaced last year’s group’s smaller signs with our larger ones, and included maps showing recycling locations at the RMC Pub Poster Samples: Slide10:  Sustainability: meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. RECYCLING AT RICE: IT JUST MAKES SENSE Poster Campaign for Upstairs RMC Poster Problems:  Poster Problems We had not anticipated the amount of consideration involved in a permanent ad campaign Locations considered: Grand Hall, Kelly Lounge, Info Desk, Miner Lounge Posters were put up successfully outside the Grand Hall and in Miner Lounge. The issue with our posters for the Pub is that they were too “edgy” – the Pub has school groups and families come in during the summer and during the daytime. Poster campaign was rejected by managerial decision. Recycling at Pub:  Recycling at Pub Our main goal was to limit the number of trash cans in convenient locations and replace them with more prominent recycling bins for glass bottles Pub already had several recycling bins in place – a small station next to the bar, and a large bin by the back door Unfortunately, in doing our waste audits of pub we noticed that these recycling bins often contain trash from pub patrons Methodology:  Methodology We performed four waste audits of pub’s trash before instituting our initiative, and two afterwards To perform these audits, we used a spring scale with a 100 pound capacity in 1 pound increments We waited until pub closed on our audit nights, then took two representative trash cans out to the loading dock in the back, separated the waste, and weighed individual items We also performed three audits of the RMC upstairs before our initiative, and three afterwards, in the same manner and using bins from outside Sammy’s and the Grand Hall Data – Pre-Initiative – Pub:  Data – Pre-Initiative – Pub This is some of the data that we collected from our initial audits of Willy’s Pub Data – Pre-Initiative - Upstairs:  Data – Pre-Initiative - Upstairs This is the initial data that we collected from the upstairs of the RMC Data Analysis – Pre-initiative Data - Pub:  Data Analysis – Pre-initiative Data - Pub Of Pub’s waste stream that we audited, a full 24.2% was recyclable glass 16% of the waste stream was non-recyclable #6 Plastic This showed that a significant reduction in the waste stream was possible by making glass recycling more accessible, and that a further, even greater benefit could be reaped by finding affordable recyclable #1 or #2 plastic cups Data Analysis – Pre-Initiative Data – Upstairs RMC:  Data Analysis – Pre-Initiative Data – Upstairs RMC The glass in these audits makes up only 2.2% of the total waste stream. Aluminum and recyclable plastics are minimal, although higher than they should be considering the proximity of these bins to the recycling bins outside the Grand Hall (bag 2 was less than five feet from the bins outside the Grand Hall) Data – Post-Initiative - Pub:  Data – Post-Initiative - Pub This is the data that we collected from Pub after installation of new bins Data – Post-Initiative - Upstairs:  Data – Post-Initiative - Upstairs This is the Data that we collected from the upstairs of the RMC after putting up our poster campaign Data Analysis – Post-Initiative Data Pub:  Data Analysis – Post-Initiative Data Pub In our post-initiative audits, the percentage of glass in Pub’s waste was 6.7% #6 Plastic constituted 10.4% of Pub’s waste after the initiative Data Analysis – Post-Initiative Data Upstairs:  Data Analysis – Post-Initiative Data Upstairs The upstairs RMC trash contained 4.08% glass Again, aluminum and recyclable plastic were negligible. Impact of Initiatives:  Impact of Initiatives Statistical Analysis – Pub:  Statistical Analysis – Pub We performed a t-test on our Pub data to determine if the difference in means was statistically significant The t-value for our data was 32.62, while the t-value for significance at alpha=.05 was 2.30 This confirms that we have achieved a statistically significant reduction in the average percentage of glass in pub’s waste stream. Statistical Analysis – Upstairs:  Statistical Analysis – Upstairs The amount of glass recyclables in the upstairs waste stream actually increased, while the amount of recyclable plastic and aluminum remained very small throughout our auditing This seems to show that last year’s group had already succeeded in reducing the RMC’s trashed recyclables. Conclusion:  Conclusion We achieved success in our efforts to decrease recyclables in Pub’s waste stream by our implementation of two new rollable recycling bins Unfortunately, our poster campaign for pub was rejected, so we could not measure the effect it would have had on recycling Our upstairs initiative has so far not proven statistically successful. However, we hope that this poster campaign will encourage recycling in the upstairs over the next several months or years There is much that can still be done for both pub and the upstairs of the RMC Suggestions for Future Research:  Suggestions for Future Research Future ENST 302 groups could focus on recycling efforts at Valhalla Additionally, since the 13th Street franchise in the RMC is new, the manager should be more amenable to suggestions such as recyclable smoothie cups Sammy’s also contributes a good deal to the waste stream, and could be a good location for a project Future ad campaigns will need to address the issue of more permanent signs for the upstairs RMC – it was suggested that our laminated signs be framed Downstairs in the Pub, however, removable signs might be best (so they can be taken off for summer) We can put .pdf files of our posters online in the ENST 302 archives for future groups to use Contacts:  Contacts Pamelyn Shefman Eusebio Franco Frank Smith Ding Bowal

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