by Alana J. Mauger, Think Green Editor
Montgomery County Community College finished third in Pennsylvania for its cumulative recycling rate of 34.85 percent during the 2012 RecycleMania Tournament.
During the eight-week nationwide competition, held Feb. 5 through April 6, colleges and universities competed to see who could reduce, reuse and recycle the most campus waste.
After participating in the tournament’s Benchmark Division for the previous four years, the College fared well in its first year of qualifying for RecycleMania’s Competition Division. In addition to being ranked third in Pennsylvania, Montgomery County Community College placed 17th among community colleges nationwide, and ranked 87th overall among the 265 competing schools.
In addition, the College ranked 18th nationally in the Waste Minimization category, which measures the pounds of municipal solid waste (both trash and recyclables) generated per person on campus.
During the tournament, the College’s Central and West campuses generated a total of 39,780 pounds of recycling and averaged 4.9 pounds of recycling per person each week. These efforts resulted in a greenhouse gas reduction of 35 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (MTCO2E), which is equivalent to the energy consumption of nine households or the emissions of 19 cars.
Montgomery County Community College was among the first institutions to sign American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) in 2007. The College’s sustainability efforts are led by a team of faculty, students, administrators, support staff, alumni and community members that comprise the President’s Climate Commitment Advisory Council.
In recognition of its deep commitment to sustainability, Montgomery County Community College was one of only five institutions in the country to earn a 2011 Award for Institutional Excellence in Climate Leadership from Second Nature. The College was also nationally profiled this month as part of ACUPCC’s “Celebrating Sustainability” series leading up to Earth Day.
To learn more about Recyclemania or to view the full list of results, visit www.recyclemaniacs.org.