Waste separation at the UG
The UG started separating waste at the source in March 2021 by introducing new waste bin islands. But, even today, not everyone is clear about how the system works. What goes in which bin? And why are the bins emptied into the same container when we collect the waste separately? This page tells you all about waste separation at the UG, from collection to processing.
At the UG, we have ambitious waste management targets: we want to reduce the amount of residual waste and we aim for all our residual waste to be suitable for recapturing in a circular process by 2026. The goal is to improve the University’s sustainability performance; this policy ties in with our values.
Why do we separate waste?
More recycling means less waste: if we separate our waste properly, we can reuse more of it rather than having to send it to landfill or incinerate it. This will reduce waste processing-related greenhouse gas emissions.
We lower the cost of waste processing: if we do a good job of separating waste, it is likely to be easier and less costly to process. This will result in lower waste collection fees.
We save on raw materials: if we separate waste properly, it will be easier to reuse or recycle certain materials. This leads to less waste and lower demand for raw materials, which benefits the environment.
Separating waste raises awareness and inspires people to participate in the transition to a circular economy.
How do we seperate waste at the UG?
At the UG, we separate our waste into five types of waste flows: paper, plastics, organic food waste, other waste, and cups. Hazardous waste produced in our laboratories is obviously collected separately.
All UG buildings have waste bin islands. They are a collection of waste bins of different colours designating the different types of waste. The bins are emptied regularly. Given that the layout of many buildings does not allow us to use a large enough waste disposal container to collect the waste flows separately, the bags are first emptied into the same large container. Once they have been taken to the collection point, they are separated again by waste flow. Plastic and residual waste are the exception. Rather than being separated, they are sent to the same company for processing. Read on to find out what happens with the different waste flows.
What goes where?
The table below shows what goes in which bin. Click on the tekst below the table to enlarge it.
What happens with our separated waste?
Waste contains a lot of reusable materials. At the UG, we want to be as sustainable as possible about recycling and processing waste. That is why we only work with local companies to recycle or process our separated waste.
What can you do?
Managing waste is teamwork. Here are a couple of useful tips for you:
Try to produce as little waste as possible. You might consider reusing packaging materials or other items you would otherwise throw out.
Did you know that the UG’s coffee cups are designed to be used multiple times? Just read the message printed on the side of the cup.
Be mindful and think about what goes where. You do not want to ‘pollute’ the waste flows, which would happen, for instance, if there is too much plastic in the paper bin or if the paper is too greasy or covered in food residue. The recycling company would then have to clean up the recycled waste before being able to process it. This is a time-consuming and costly process. What is more, it can cause some of the waste to become unsuitable for recycling.
Make sure that plastic containers are clean when you put them in the plastic bin. They do not have to be spotless, but there should not be too much residue. If a container is impossible to clean, you should think of it as residual waste.
Help spread awareness of the importance of recycling.
Frequently asked questions
Do you have questions about the waste policy? Let us know via email@example.com.
|Last modified:||12 May 2023 4.30 p.m.|