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University of Iowa: Composting Campaign for Environmental Sustainability

The institution has been working on developing effective composting programs for a while now, with staff members advocating for these initiatives in their buildings.
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The Tippie College of Business, an extension of the University of Iowa, is stepping into the environmental sustainability campaign with an initiative that will help reduce waste production.

Members of staff at the institution have chosen to develop their waste-reduction systems, in a bid to not get left behind as other schools have developed similar initiatives, the Daily Iowan reports.

A Collaborative Effort Yields Progress

Sara Maples, the Manager of Tippie’s Research, Support, and Sustainability arm, explained to the news medium that the institution has been working on developing effective composting programs for a while now, with staff members advocating for these initiatives in their buildings.

Hoping to meet this increase in demand, she and her department worked to create sustainability programs that will help to reduce waste and build a positive impact on the environment.

“Waste reduction is something that our college has wanted to pursue in regard to our sustainability efforts for a while. This specific composting project came out of an initiative that was spearheaded by our staff council, who were really excited to pursue composting as part of our overall waste-reduction strategies,” she said to the news medium.

Rachel Marek, the President of the Engineering Staff Advisory Council at the school, was one of the most instrumental forces behind the initiative, and she pointed out that they were inspired by the success of costing programs by the Office of Sustainability at the university.

Maples also added that the program had been extended to include several other composting sites, so it’s not just centralized to the university alone.

A compost bin is seen in the staff and faculty lounge of the Pappajon Business Building on Tuesday, February 11, 2020. The bins were introduced in January to allow items like paper towels and pizza boxes to be recycled. (Hayden Froehlich/The Daily Iowan.)

Maples added that while there are only two composting sites, support for the program has been overwhelming, and they’ve already been able to collect about 23 gallons of compostable waste in their “green bins.” The proponents of the program have also been able to enlighten more people on the benefits of composting and how it could significantly help to achieve an environmentally sustainable Earth.

Environmental Sustainability is Our Responsibility

Kaveh Mostafavi, the founder, and CEO of Ecocare Supply and The Compost Ninja (a partner with the university’s composting project), explained, “We provide literature, education, and guidance on how to properly compost to all who are interested. It’s pretty simple. The positive impact is clear to those who use it, and so far, it has been positively received at the university by everyone.”

Environmental sustainability is a project that several institutions and organizations have focused on in recent times. The increasing reality of climate change has caused many to wake up to the fact that the Earth is undergoing a rapid transformation, and regardless of your industry or line of work, we’re all responsible for ensuring that this issue is effectively addressed.

Earlier this week, News.au reported that the Woolworths Holding Company, a popular retail conglomerate based out of South Africa, is working on a program that will see it drop plastic bags for biodegradable and paper-based alternatives. The change will first be implemented across the fruits and vegetable section of Countdown- a retail chain owned by Woolworths- and is expected to sweep across the firm over time.

The program is set to last for about ten weeks, and the company has made a commitment to monitor the progress of the initiative to see if they can completely overhaul their packaging techniques to make them more eco-friendly.

Kiri Hannifin, the Head of Sustainability at Countdown, explained that while they’ve been able to make some changes to their packaging, they understand the effects that these changes could be having on other parts of their business.

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Hollie Carter

Hollie is a life-long gardener, having started helping her Dad work on their yard when she was just 5. Since then she has gone on to develop a passion for growing vegetables & fruit in her garden. She has an affinity with nature and loves to share her knowledge gained over a lifetime with readers online. Hollie has written for a number of publications and is now the resident garden blogger here at GardenBeast. Contact her at hollie@gardenbeast.com or follow on twitter https://twitter.com/greenholliec

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