Trash to Treasure- Coordination and Packaging
I will be in charge of coordinating with the faculty of IES to allow recycling of appliances to be possible. Students will donate their appliances that they bought while stu dying abroad such as blow dryers and cell phones that they will not be bringing home. I will create two forms for the students to fill out, one when they are donating their appliances, and one when they will rent them out next year. Stephanie Eastlake will be in charge of inventory and Megan Bernstein will be in charge of advertising this project. At the end of this semester, once all of the collections of the appliances has completed, I will help box and store the appliances for the students to use next semester. This project will not only help students save money and give IES some extra cash, but it will help the environment that will go a long way.
The point of this project is to help prevent electronic waste buildup from the hundreds of American students that live in Barcelona for one semester and leave, throwing away cell-phones, blow dryers, straightening irons, kitchen appliances, converters, and any other electronic they purchased here that would not work in an American plug. Electronic waste is an issue that is rapidly expanding. Many people buy appliances, and once they are broken or not needed, are thrown away. Most people don't understand the affect if has on the environment from where this ends up.
Two of the possibilities for where these appliances could go are landfills or to be incinerated. "According to the US EPA, more than 4.6 million tonnes of e-waste ended up in US landfills in 2000" (Greenpeace.org). This was just in 2000, imagine over a decade later all of the new appliances that have come out since. The iPod came out in 2001 and there have been so many improvements to that, think of how many old iPods were thrown away to be replaced. Our generation is very electronic-dependent and there are more and more new models of cameras, televisions, stereos, computers, laptops, etc. that come out all of the time, encouraging people to get ride of the old and buy the new. Now when these electronics are thrown into landfills, this is not just something that could biodegrade over time. There are hazardous chemicals that come from these appliances that negatively affect our environment, running into the ground and potentially into our water system.
As a student studying abroad in Barcelona, I don't want my ecological footprint to be left here, adding waste to a city that the other American students and I have come to know and love. After watching an American news program called 60 minutes on one of the most toxic places in the world, a city in China, I realized how terrible landfills can get from electronics. In this town, you can neither drink the water nor breath the air and the children's blood is laced with lead from the landfills that Americans old appliances have landed. This landfill not only affected the water system by allowing the e-waste to degrade into the earth, but the incineration of these products puts chemicals such as lead, cadmium, and mercury in the air and ashes. It is clear that the long-term affects of not handling e-waste properly can be devastating to both the environment and our health.
Although recycling these appliances seems like a good plan, there is no way to know how these products are recycled and if it was done properly. The most sustainable way to get rid of appliances that still work but are no longer needed is to be re-used. That is why our system of donating and renting electronics from IES each semester will help lessen the ecological footprint that American students have on Barcelona. By creating simple forms for the students to use and packaging the products neatly and carefully for storage, IES will be able to stay organized and keep these products available for the next semester of students.Overall, our goal is to prevent eco-efficiency and influence others in eco-effectiveness.
Creating forms that are organized and easy to use will help IES keep the appliances organized and ready to rent.
Packaging the materials at the end of the semester for storage will keep them safe and ready for next semester's students to use.
By staying organized we are helping the program succeed and grow from this year on.
There is a storage place for the appliances that is already available and approved by IES staff.
The forms will be printed on sheets of paper that can be wasteful the more that has to be printed out every year every time a new student rents them.
Participation could be minimal and all of the forms and boxes would be wasted.
Space in IES is limited and could become cluttered or cause frustration for IES staff.
By staying organized, other students will be more likely to take on the task the next year because it is easier to work with.
The forms will allow IES to keep track of the products coming in and out so they can keep a record for each year of the products they helped rent out or the money they made from the project from year to year.
Using eco-euro's as an incentive to have students donate/rent items and will also be a good way to get more students to participate. This will be complied with the sustainability club.
The boxes could be stored improperly and the appliances could break.
There could not be enough storage space for the appliances to fit if many students participate, causing us to have to recycle some appliances instead of re-using them.
The paper could not work as well with packaging over time. We tried it out and it works well with newspaper and then with computer paper as cushion but over time being unwrapped and wrapped again could affect organization.
Good organization of rental/donation forms allows for the project to be more organized and to be continued on year after year and setting up good organization for the years to come -positive reinforcing loop
Good storage of the products allows for the appliances to stay safe giving the students next semester more appliances to rent from and making the project expand to more students also. Positive reinforcing loop.
Having good organization and coordination with IES will allow for students in the future years to participate or run the project seeing how easy and efficient it can be, allowing the project to continue and eventually grow. Positive reinforcing loop.
Students will have an easy time renting/donating their appliances.
The IES employee who will be in charge of renting out and collecting the appliances will be able to stay organized with the labeled boxes, the forms, and the organized packaging and storing at the end of the semester.
When a student has an easy time renting/donating the appliances, the word will spread in a positive light to other IES students to encourage them to participate.
The project can continue over time if its starts off being organized, efficient, and well-handled.
Eco-euro's will be more valuable if they are circulated through this system and used more.
This will take up space in IES with the boxes of appliances.
This will take effort from IES employees to collect/rent out the appliances and then re-start the project again at the beginning of the new semester.
The paper and boxes will cost money from IES. The tape will also cost money and could make more trash.
In the attached documents, you will see the forms that I have created with simple questions for the students to fill out both when renting and when donating the appliances. I spoke with Ferran Teres who was in charge of the cell-phone donations last semester and we discussed having the forms approved and then saved on the IES computers for them to print out when necessary and where we can store the appliances at the end of the semester once they are packaged and ready. There is already space for the appliances in the storage closet in IES next to his office where we can store the appliances for next year. Ferran is excited about the project and wants us to help succeed with his help.
The e-mail's that Stephanie and Megan have sent out will be sent out at the beginning of next year with a note at the bottom asking students to help lead this project so this will ensure the project from failing and allow it to continue. We will coordinate with Ferran when this e-mail will be sent out.
Cradle to Cradle
The way this project is going to be a 'cradle to cradle' design is by using recycled paper to wrap the appliances for storage and then saved for wrapping again until they can no longer be used. The forms, if not destroyed, can be an example of wrapping material when they are done being used such as when a student returns their appliance and their rental form will be thrown away. That way we are using the same materials for multiple aspects of the project and when they are done being used in one category they can be useful in another. The paper will not be the only source of wrapping. We will also use old newspaper from the recycling bins because that is a better wrapping material to add on. The paper can be used for cushioning in the boxes so the appliances don't bump against each other so that we will not have to use lots of tape. The tape we will use will be recyclable and easy to write on so we can label the materials.
Questions for the unified survey
1. Have you bought any appliances in Barcelona that you know you will not be taking home with you?
2. Do you have a lot of appliances that only work with a European outlet?
Analysis of the results in the survey
The results from the survey given explained that out of the 20 people that took the survey, 13 of them said they had appliances that they will not be taken home with them. This shows that the majority of the students have the means to participate in this project which is a good start. Out of the 20 students 7 said that they had an appliance with only a European outlet. Although this is not a 100% guarantee that all students can participate and all students will participate, this does give us an idea that there are students who are able to participate in our project. When the students were asked if they would participate in a trash to treasure program, 17 out of the 20 said yes which gives us an idea that there is an interest in the project and it is realistic for us to go through with.
Incentives for this project will be for students to spend less or no money on appliances from renting. My personal contribution for this incentive is to make the renting process as easy, organized, and efficient as possible so that the students will feel this won't be complicated and will want to participate. This is also an incentive for IES to participate since they will keep the deposit money the students give to rent the products if they don't return the appliance. If I make sure that the appliances are well stored and will be easy to keep track of with the forms I provide, then they will be glad to add money to IES's program by participating as well. Students will also have the incentive to gain eco-euro's from donating appliances to IES. This will be added to the future e-mail for next year's group so they will participate sooner and gain from the eco-euro.
Relationship with the Sustainability Club
Eco-euro's will be provided to students who donate their appliances. They will the same amount of eco-euros but can get more for each appliance they donate. They can also receieve eco-euro's for renting the appliances, just for participating in the program. This will give students more of an incentive to join and help get the eco-euro's out and used.
How will this action be sustained when you are not here?
This action will be sustained when I am not here with my coordination with Ferran Teres. When I package the materials at the end of the semester, Ferran has a place to store the materials over the summer and will start up the project when the next semester begins. I will also give him the format to save on his computer for the forms to fill out when renting or donating the appliances that he can reuse each year without having to print them out and waste paper. He can print out the amounts that are necessary when the time comes.
What appliance are you donating?
Is this appliance broken in any way?
If this is a cell phone, what is the number of the phone?
Was this appliance rented or were you the one to buy it?
Is there a password to this appliance, if so, what is it?
Please write any other important information here:
What appliance are you renting?
Is there anything wrong with this appliance? If so, please explain in detail so you do not get blamed for any damage.
Did you give a deposit, if so, how much?
IES Staff Signature: __
Rental Date: //___
Return Date: /_/__
(This form can be copied and saved to be used for the future or to be edited, here is the PDF form attatched as well.)
Copyright license of your report
On the Creative Commons website it explains that 'Attribution CC By' is, "This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials". I really like how this copyright works because I would want future students to continue on this path and change it in any way they see fit. This copyright also gives us the credit for the work we have done.
Time-sheet / Chronogram
April 25th, forms will be available at IES for people to fill out and donate in the bins/boxes that Stephanie will put out that day that will be provided by IES. These forms will be printed as needed so they are not wasted from being printed ahead of time and having too many extras. These will be available by Ferran's office and will be provided upon request from Ferran or Caterina. May 6th, I will package and store the appliances and make any last minute details organized with Ferran Teres. At the beginning of next year he will send out the e-mail Megan created and will add at the bottom that students are welcome to volunteer to run the program who are in Sustainability class or not.
Students from previous semesters work: http://sustainability.seeds4c.org/Electronics+Recycling+Program&structure=2010b+Fall+Actions
Students involved in this action
Jenny Schaye- Leader- Coordination and Packaging
Stephanie Eastlake- Leader- Inventory
Megan Bernstein- Leader- Advertising
Assignment 4: Peer review form
Grades for this action report (From the PROFESSOR)