Category Archives: recycle

2019 Earth Day Logo

ARC Earth Day 2019

2019 Earth Day Logo

I’m working on our upcoming Earth Day Celebration here at American River College and I wanted to extend an invitation to each of you to host a free table to share the sustainability efforts of your department or for any green artists or businesses you might be involved with and/or any suggestions for others you may have! We’ll be celebrating Earth Day on: 

Wednesday, April 24 from 8 am – 3 pm

This year’s theme is a little different, REPAIR & REUSE—two of the six R’s of recycling (Reduce / REUSE / Recycle / REPAIR / Rot / Refuse). As we go about developing our strategies to meet ARC President Thomas Greene’s goal of ZERO WASTE BY 2025, we will be looking at the three distinct areas to focus our efforts on:

  1. Upstream: Where we affect product or packaging by a manufacturer that supplies items to our college
  2. Middlestream: Where we extend the longevity of the products used by repairing, reusing, repurposing, refurbishing, donating, and recovering—like food
  3. Downstream: Where we maximize the recovery of resources from our discarded items by sorting and diverting from land fill…aluminum can goes here, food waste goes there, and as a last resort land fill goes ‘away’.

It’s the MIDDLESTREAM that we’d like to highlight this year—extending the life of the items around us! How frequently we buy things affects the amount of material to be managed in our waste streams. By changing consumption expectations, and by extending the life our products, we can reduce the amount of downstream efforts needed to meet our goals.

We’ll of course be once again highlighting ARC’s Fine & Applied Arts Department with our upcycled recycle bins being assembled and reconditioned by our Student Veteran’s Club, booths from our ARC Environmental Studies, Electronics & Automotive Departments, your STRIPE booth, and hosting an e-waste drop off …but this year, I’m going to be inviting people who have probably never been asked to join in on this type of event: local businesses like sewing machine, vacuum & appliance repair shops in our area!

You can find photos from our previous Earth Day Celebrations on our social media outlets here—we’ll of course be having photographs captured for you to share on your social networks this year as well:

If you are interested in tabling at our event, please fill out our online application and someone from my team will get back in touch with you. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me directly—thank you for your consideration.

Don Reid
Earth Day Celebration, Chair

Fall 2018 Convocation

First off, welcome to the Fall Semester—can you believe it’s about to begin again! This summer has been a busy one here at ARC, bringing us 15 new solar trailers & a third wave of 32 new blue/black recycle stations. If you’d like more info on those, scroll down and check out the post just before this one!! This post is my regularly scheduled plea to encourage all Convocation attendees to consider:

  • If you are a coffee drinker, there will be coffee—bring your own reusable coffee mug
  • A reusable water bottle that can be filled up at the Elkay filtered water bottle refill station located in the atrium of the Student Center. There are 14 of these now to choose from here at ARC
  • Avoid using the non-recyclable black plastic plates & forks—bring your own reusable lunch-ware/fork
  • Skip the straws—they are never recyclable
  • Separate your waste correctly and avoid contaminating our recycle waste stream with food items to increase the chances of keeping those separated items out of the land fill

Convocation Waste Audit:
Call for volunteers…

We’ll be doing another waste audit out in front of the Student Center once convocation is over and I could use some volunteers; so, if you have a couple of hours on this very busy day to see how well everyone sorted our trash/recycling/food waste, please hit reply and let me know. I am trying to get a representative out here from Waste Management, not only to help us out, but to hold a discussion about their response to China’s new rules regarding recycling that you have undoubtedly been hearing about in the news.

Many of you have reached out to me with questions about China’s National Sword Policy and how we are going to address the changes brought in by the rule changes as far as recycling goes. While there is a lot of work going on right now by our haulers to find new waste streams around the world, the bottom line is WE ALL need to work harder on the most important R of the four R’s—REDUCE. Eliminating single use plastics, especially the ones that go straight to our landfill will become more and more important this year; as will rinsing off and drying your recyclables.

REDUCE, Reuse, Recycle & Rot…

According to Waste Management (ARC’s waste hauler):

  • Paper and cardboard must be dry and free of food debris.
  • Tissues, paper towels or other paper that has been in contact with food is not acceptable.
  • Make sure food contamination and caps are removed from cans and plastics and all containers are empty.
  • Separate plastic lids from plastic bottles (often made from different materials).
  • Do not place medical waste (needles, catheters or lancets) into the recycling containers.

TIPS & RESOURCES

It’s going to be more and more important that we understand the specific needs of our waste haulers, and that requirements vary depending on their capabilities/equipment/policy. Be sure to check in with your waste hauler if you haven’t recently as they are all making changes and they are all emphasizing the need to stop the ‘WISHFUL RECYCLING’ of items that CONTAMINATE the waste stream.

ARC’s WASTE HAULER
OTHER LOCAL HAULERS
CITY/COUNTY RESOURCES
WASTE WIZARD:

Waste not generated is waste we won’t have to dispose of. Please consider doing your part in source reduction where ever you can. If you’d like to discuss this further, or have ideas for your own department that you’d like help implementing please feel free to reach out. The only way we are going to meet our state’s diversion mandates & our president’s zero-waste goals is by having everyone here evaluate & look for opportunities to improve how they handle their trash.

Don Reid

2018 Spring Convocation

As you may have heard, this coming Spring Convocation will be a district-wide one held here at American River College. In discussing this event at our recent Sustainability Summit, representatives from each of our four colleges talked about the possibility of making this a Zero Waste event.

In an effort to pull that monumental task off,  we were able to purchase ten portable recycle stations from ClearStream Recycling, Inc. and Cosumnes River College was able to purchase 15 which we are hoping to borrow for the day. Here is a photo of these things at a recent California Higher Education Sustainability Conference (CHESC) I was able to attend at UC Santa Barbara…

This month, we’ll be working with the folks over in Aramark to come up with signage to make it clear to all of our guests as to what goes where, and we’ll be having a waste audit once it’s all wrapped up to see how we did.

This Zero Waste goal is a big one, and one we won’t be able to pull off without YOUR help. Please keep this in mind as you dispose of your trash and separate your waste! For more information about where your waste goes, be sure to check out the ARC Operations webpage or by contacting me directly at ReidD@arc.losrios.edu.

Don Reid, Supervisor Printing Services

ARC Sustainability Committee, Chair
ARC Green Office Committee, Chair
ARC Campus Tree Advisory Committee, Chair
ARC Buildings Grounds & Safety Committee, Campus Sustainability Representative
CHESC Steering Committee, representing CA Community Colleges

4th annual Los Rios Sustainability Summit // Zero Waste

If you would like solid answers to questions like,                     .
“why do we need to pay attention to recycling [diverting]?”
this summit will offer the training you’ve been looking for!

This year at our Fall Convocation, President Thomas Greene stated that he would like ARC to be Zero Waste campus by 2025. Knowing how much work that is, I thought it would be a good idea to make it the theme of our 4th annual district-wide Sustainability Summit to give some solid information & training as well as share the Zero Waste concepts as they relate to us.

I was able to attend a recent CA Green Summit downtown at the convention center where I saw a presentation from CalRecycle that focused on diverting food waste. They discussed recent legislation as well as stats and data on how businesses are doing around our state. Making greener choices in the packaging we use, and in the options available for discarding trash are key here in running a successful zero waste program, and so I am pleased to invite you all to hear from experts in this field to give us this much-needed training.

4th Annual
Los Rios Community College District
Sustainability Summit 2017

December 1, 2017
Raef Hall 160
9:00 AM – 11:30 AM

A G E N D A

Introductions & updates from the sustainability reps of SCC, CRC, FLC

Don Reidpresentation about the partnership of our
Student Senate & ARC Administration on the purchasing our new recycle stations

John Duke & Joseph Rasmussen from CalRecycle to discuss recent legislation & share
why it’s important to recycle & divert food waste

Rich Brown from BERC who provides education and performs outreach through workshops for businesses and communities regarding environmental compliance and sustainability.

Jenna Abbott from California Resource Recovery Association to talk about zero-waste concepts, as well as the certifications they offer that you can get covered with professional development funding

Questions & Answers.

 

Again, this is a district-wide event open to everyone interested. If you have been wanting to get more involved in the sustainability efforts of your campus, this would be a great way to get plugged in as representatives from the sustainability committees from all of our colleges will be here. I hope you can make it—help & involvement is needed on every one of our colleges with these efforts, for sure—especially here at ARC!

For those of you who still need Flex hours for the Fall semester,
this will be a great way to get those hours!
This event meets State PD Guideline B, ARC Strategic Goal 4, & ISOL 6.
We’ll have a sign in sheet available on the day of as you walk in the door.

This is a zero-waste event. Please consider choosing to bring in your reusable water bottle which can be filled at one of our new filtered water bottle refill stations in Davies Hall (first floor on the east & west sides).

 

Don Reid, ARC Printing Services Supervisor

ARC Sustainability Committee, Chair
ARC Green Office Committee, Chair
ARC Campus Tree Advisory Committee, Chair
ARC Buildings Grounds & Safety Committee, Campus Sustainability Representative
CHESC Steering Committee member

Update on our Elkay filtered water bottle refill stations

I went out to the SRPSTC yesterday and was shown their new retrofitted Elkay filtered water bottle refill station! They had a couple questions, and so I wanted to share the answers with everyone.

  • Are these filtering the water and if so, what is filtered out?
    The Elkay filter used in the bottle filling stations reduces aesthetic chlorine, taste & odor, particulate class I, and lead.
  • How do we get the filter replaced when it’s required?
    Fill out a Maintenance Order request using the Maintenance Connection website, or send an email to green@arc.losrios.edu (or to me directly)
  • The filter status light on our unit is out…what’s up with that?

Our Facilities Department has done a cool thing. They have moved the filter down from the water bottle filler to lower in the line so that the drinking water from the whole unit is filtered as well. Because of this adjustment of the filter location, the filter light is no longer in the path of being monitored by the lights. Bottom line, if there is a stream of water coming out, then the water is filtered. As the filter becomes spent, the stream of water coming out will get thinner and thinner, but it will still be filtered. If you notice the stream getting thinner, please feel free to put a workorder in to the Maintenance Connection website (or an email directly to me) to get it replaced.

Some staggering numbers based on what I pulled from the machines today…and a calculator on the Elkay website:

  • Bottles not purchased since installs began as of today: 332,826
  • Cost per bottle at vending machines: $1.75
  • Total savings for our students/staff/faculty if each of these were purchased in our vending machines: $582,445.50
  • Pounds of plastic waste not being disposed of: 13,868 pounds!!!!

Here are the numbers and locations of our existing machines, and future plans/hopes/dreams. We’ll be reaching the end of the money that was donated by our Associated Student Senate for these units, but will make every effort to move forward on Phase 3 as far as the remainder of their $20,000 will go.

Again, I want to send a HUGE thank you to the Student Senate for the gift of delicious clean pure drinking water that I know I personally enjoy every single day. If you do the Facebook thing, consider giving them a big ARC thanks & LIKE on their Facebook page, or even a quick note on paper. You can send it to the Center for Leadership & Development…I’m certain it would be well received.

P.S.
While I have your attention, I’d also like to make sure everyone knows about our Toner/Light Bulb/Battery Recycle Program—please please please bring these items to one of the many drop off places around our campus. If you are unsure of where that is, just send them to Printing Services. These items should ALWAYS be diverted from our land fill stream of waste. It needs to be EVERYONE’s job to help divert as much as we can from landfills if we are to meet AB341 diversion requirements which require that by 2020 we are diverting 75% from that waste stream. We are currently at around 40% (+/-), fyi.

Thank you all for your support in these efforts.

Don Reid, Supervisor Printing Services

ARC Sustainability Committee, Chair
ARC Green Office Committee, Chair
ARC Tree Campus Advisory Committee, Chair
ARC Buildings Grounds & Safety Committee, Campus Sustainability Representative