College group joins in the nationwide RecycleMania effort

Faith Hughes, Clarion Staff Writer

It’s a fact of life that our Earth will not take care of itself. It’s up to us, as a populace, to engage in conservation and recycling with an eye toward social and environmental responsibility. The Madison College Sustainability Alliance (MESA) has helped make that process a little easier with RecycleMania, a program that is aimed at raising awareness for recycling, reducing landfill waste, and promoting sustainability.

RecycleMania, aimed at students and faculty, is off to a start for 2012. This is the second year that the program has been running, and it features a different theme each week. It will run until Feb.10.

“For me, the most positive thing is getting information out about sustainable efforts at the college, increasing awareness of waste generat- ed on campus, increasing recycling, and reducing landfill waste,” said Nancy Meyer, who is helping lead the Madison College RecycleMania effort for MESA.

RecycleMania is currently focusing on single-sort recycling, combining items such as newspapers, cans, plastic, glass, magazines and office paper all in one effort. Blue containers are featured in classrooms and offices around Madison College for this purpose. However, soiled items, such as facial tissue and dirty/ non-empty containers are not included in the single-stream effort as one contaminated item voids out an entire load of recyclable items. Individuals should take care to properly empty and rinse out containers before adding them to the recycling bins.

The upcoming third week of the program will be focused on recycling items such as computers and electronics. Goodwill Industries willingly accept any electronic items that a person wishes to dispose. This includes computers, monitors, televisions and radios among other devices. Cell phone users who have an iPhone or Android platform can also download an application for, a site that offers general recycling and sustainability tips as well as a tool that locates local recycling centers.

Week four, the culminating week of RecycleMania, will showcase an all-encompassing theme of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.” Tips and hints that are conducive to daily life will be stressed, including using reusable grocery bags, buying products made from post-consumer recycled materials and avoiding overly packaged goods. Donating and reusing items rather than just sending unwanted products to the landfills is important as well.

For more information

RecycleMania program leader Nancy Meyer encour- ages students and faculty to visit the MESA website at to learn more about the program. She also can be contacted at (608) 243-4048.