Reunions may be all about the orange and black, but increasingly it’s turning green. From composting and recycling to the Class of ’76’s efforts “toward zero waste,” Reunions 2016 will include more sustainability initiatives than ever before.
The Office of Sustainability along with the Office of Alumni Affairs, Building Services, and student EcoReps are continuing successful green programs while also developing new ones. Here are some of the highlights of this year’s sustainability efforts:
EcoReps: The Princeton University Ecology Representative Program (EcoReps) was founded in 2004 in collaboration with the Offce of Sustainability. At Reunions, EcoReps wearing bright green tank tops serve as sustainability advocates and educators. They promote recycling at headquarters sites and along the P-rade route, where they collect an average of 70 bags of recyclables each year.
Cup Collection: There will be an estimated 100,000 plastic cups at this year’s Reunions. The EcoReps will be piloting cup collections at select headquarters sites (the fifth, 10th, 15th, 20th, 25th, and 40th). No. 5 logo cups and No. 6 beer cups will be collected and sent to two regional businesses (TerraCycle and Preserve), which will upcycle them into products such as Adirondack chairs, toothbrushes, and other household items.
Bring Your Own Bedding: This year the Classes of 1986 and 2015 are piloting the option to use their own bedding in campus dorms for a discounted room rate, rather than renting linens for three days. This program is designed to reduce packaging waste from rental bedding. After this year, the “BYOB” option will be offered to all classes.
Drink Local: Attendees can stay hydrated and reduce the use of disposable plastic water bottles at Reunions by drinking free filtered water from 200-plus stations located in buildings across campus. For a full list, visit sustain.princeton.edu/drinklocal. There will also be 25 large water dispensers (aka “Water Monsters”) along the P-rade route and one near Lot 23.
Sustainability Chairs: Beginning next year, each class’s Reunions committee will have the option to designate a sustainability chair to coordinate sustainability efforts in their planning. The Office of Sustainability will provide recommendations and tips to help these chairs green future Reunions.
What you can do to help make Reunions green:
- Reuse and reduce! Hold on to your recyclable cup and write your name on it.
- Recycle cups, cans and bottles in the bins marked “for recycling only.”
- Mind the bin! Don’t throw any food or other waste in the recycling bins.
- Keep Princeton’s campus beautiful! Don’t disturb the landscaping with golf carts or litter.
- Spread the word! Help promote recycling all weekend!