1. Action name
Recycling is a fast and easy way for people to lead a more sustainable life. Currently, each inhabitant in Spain generates approximately 2 to 3 pounds, or 0.9 to 1.36 kilograms of waste every single day. Installing recycling bins for not only plastic and aluminum bottles, but also glass and paper is a good way to allow IES Barcelona to lower it's ecological footprint left by the students and staff using such recyclables. The continued part of the action is including glass and paper recycling bins, not just those for plastic and aluminum.
1.2. Why this action makes things more sustainable?
- Change in Attitudes
- Reducing dependency on...
- Ecological/Water footprints
- Externalization of costs
- Long term effects
- Feedback loops (balancing / reinforcing, lagged or not)
- SLEN vs. TINA
- Copyleft (CC)...
- Free Software
- "Cradle to cradle" design (Waste = Food)
- Eco-effectiveness (vs. Eco-efficiency)
Each semester hundreds of students come to study at IES Abroad Barcelona. A growing concern for the program over the past number of years has been it enormous amount of waste generated by students and staff improperly disposing of it. This causes an environmental dilemma.
Everyday hundreds of students are shuffling throughout the IES Abroad Center, many of them carrying plastic bottles, soda cans, glass bottles, or bundles of paper that they have brought from their apartments or bought at a department store. These items are not finding the proper disposal as there are no recycling bins at the IES Center. As a program, this is extremely wasteful and detrimental to the environment. Inserting recycling receptacles on each floor in the IES Center will help IES become a much more sustainable program as they will be lowering their waste consumed and they will be contributing to the re-production of other valuable products.
A study performed in April, 2002, by Nolan-ITU, a sustainability consulting firm, revealed that 48% of all paper products, 7% of all plastic products, 35% of all glass products, and 19% of aluminum cans were recycled in Spain. The study also states that Spain has a 6% waste to energy ratio. Placing recycling bins in the IES Abroad Center would help that number increase across the board in the long run, while simultaneously decreases IES Abroad Barcelona's ecological footprint. For example, each ton of paper recycled saves 17 trees, 25 barrels of oil, 7,000 gallons of water, and 3 cubic feet of landfill space. Also, if students begin recycling here, it may encourage a change in attitude, allowing for us to become less wasteful in the United States as well.
Spanish law states that food and drink companies must pay the cost of recycling for the glass that their product comes in. This allows for other local businesses to handle the collection, sorting, and re-processing system, displaying the SLEN .vs. TINA model. After collecting the bottles, these businesses melt down the bottles and process them into bottles again, or other household items.
1.2.1. SWOT Analysis
Less waste generated by IES
Lower ecological footprint
Products will be reused
Business for locally owned companies
Additional burden on IES staffto find space for bins, money to purchase them, gave someone empty them
Not necessarily a big incentive
Help Barcelona become more sustainable
Learn how the recycling process works
Use the ecoeuro incentive program
Students and staff may not be willing to participate
May be no one to empty them
IES may not want the bins taking up room in the building
1.2.2. Feedback loops
More recycling bins and advertisements -> More recycling -> Less waste generated by IES -> Less bins needed (This is a reinforcing loop because there is an even number of negative links. If IES places more recycling bins throughout the center, more people will be inclined to recycle, lowering the waste generated by IES, which will lead to less bins needed in the center.)
1.2.3. Potential Benefits
- Help IES generate less waste
- Will lower ecological footprint
- Help local businesses grow and prosper (more business for the local recycling company and processing company allowing for perhaps more jobs and production)
- Encourage students to continue to recycle upon arrival in the United States
- Encourage a healthier lifestyle
1.2.4. Potential Costs
- Initial cost of buying recycling bins
- Time for someone to empty the bins
- Loss of space in the IES Center
Currently, there are recycling boxes for paper, located next to the printers on floors with computers. Brian has spoke with Ferran who has stated that it is too expensive, as well too space consuming to add more recycling bins. Therefore, in accordance with the Sustainability Club, posters have been hung informing students and staff of the nearest recycling bins, as well as the proper ones to use.
Advertisement to be hung in the IES Center:
Bringing bottles, cans, paper, etc. into the IES Center?
Help make IES more environmentally friendly by throwing them in their proper recycling receptacle.
They are located on the corner just to the right. (Brown = Organic, Grey = Non-Organic, Blue = Paper, Yellow = Plastic, Green = Glass)
Please do your part and help save the world!
1.3.1. "Cradle to Cradle" design
As individual bins will not be able to be purchased this semester, posters have been made using recycled from IES that were already used. This displays the "Cradle to Cradle" design of waste = food as the paper which was waste is now becoming an advertisement informing of recycling bin locations, or food.
1.3.2. Questions for the unified survey
"Do you think that most students at IES would use recycling bins? "
In future semesters, the question would be "would you use the recycling bins."
1.3.3. Analysis of the results in the survey
Approximately 4 out of 5 students in the survey said that they would agree to use recycling bins if IES offered them. However, this research group was only a fraction of the amount of students here at IES Abroad Barcelona, but I believe that most other students would answer the same way, as throwing a water bottle or soda can in the proper bin is something that is rather easy to do.
The new question would be answered in the future by others taking the survey.
There are several incentives that can be given in order to encourage people to participate in this action, both big and small. For example, one incentive could trying to learn how a recycling system works. Another incentive is the mere fact that you are improve the planet and reducing waste simply by recycling. Another idea is to have an IES-wide contest run by the Sustainability Club for every class, and the winning class receives perhaps a pizza party, or each students receives EcoEuros.
1.3.5. Relationship with the "Sustainability Club" (SC)
Brian has spoken with Solomon, the Sustainability Club president, and has placed advertisements around the building in accordance with the Sustainability Club.
1.3.6. How will this action be sustained when you are not here?
The advertisements that are hung notifying students of the recycling bins would be able to remain posted meaning no one would need to maintain them.
1.3.7. Document format
This webpage is available by way of .html format. The advertisement that will be hung throughout IES was made using Microsoft Office's .odt format.
1.3.8. Copyright license of your report
Brian chose to use the Attribution-ShareAlike copyright license because it allows him to be credited for his input on this action, but also allows for others to add others ways of recycling to help make the world more sustainable.
1.4. Time-sheet / Chronogram
Brian McNevin (April 26) - Print and hang advertisements identifying the nearest location of recycling bins. - 30 minutes
1.5. References & Links
Baxter, Fiona, and Peter Schmigel. "Recycling - How Does Australia Compare?." Nolan-ITU Pty Ltd 2002, 04 2010. Web. 22 Apr 2011. .
Murray-White, James. "Recycling Around the World." Recycling Expert. N.p., 17 10 2010. Web. 22 Apr 2011. .
"Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Buy Recycled." U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. N.p., 16 11 2010. Web. 22 Apr 2011. .
"What a Waste!." N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Apr 2011. . .populationeducation.org>.environment.gov.au>
1.6. Students involved in this action
Brian McNevin performed this action alone.
Assignment 4: Peer review form
Grades for this action report (From the PROFESSOR)