In keeping with its commitment to the protection of the environment, the Community College of Rhode Island has active programs in place at all its campuses for recycling components of the College's various waste streams. CCRI recycles its waste for the following reasons:
Recycling preserves natural resources. Recycling paper instead of throwing it away reduces the number of trees that have to be cut down and the water resources needed to process wood pulp. Recycling glass and aluminum greatly reduces the amount of fuel and electricity needed for their manufacture. Recycling reduces the need to take up more space in our already overburdened Central Landfill in Johnston, Rhode Island.
Recycling materials costs less money than burying trash in a landfill. Furthermore, many raw materials are more expensive than recycled materials of the same quality. As our present landfills fill up and are closed, more precious land will have to be set aside for trash disposal and the cost of burying trash will rise even more.
The Community College of Rhode Island is classified by law as a commercial generator of solid waste. Rhode Island has adopted environmental standards for commercial generators of solid waste that mandate a recycling rate of ten to 30% of the solid waste generated. Another requirement of the statute requires state agencies to help conserve space at the State Landfill. In addition, there are severe legal penalties for disposing of environmentally hazardous substances in public landfills. The improper disposal of materials such as used oil and fluorescent lights can cause serious environmental pollution. As required by law, CCRI has filed a Solid Waste Reduction and Recycling Annual Report every year with the RIDEM listing the types and amounts of solid waste the college recycles. Click on http://www.dem.ri.gov/pubs/regs/regs/stratpol/commrecy.pdf (*PDF file) for the DEM Rules and Regulations for Reduction and Recycling of Commercial and Non-Municipal Residential Solid Waste.
In all Rhode Island (and Massachusetts) communities, programs for recycling of household trash have been in place for years. From time to time, students, staff, and faculty of the Community College of Rhode Island have spoken up to make recycling an aspect of life at CCRI also. Recycling provides a link between CCRI's Hazardous Waste Disposal Program, Wastewater Discharge Permits, and CCRI's commitment to environmental education. Recycling concepts are presently taught in a laboratory setting in at least one CCRI course. Chemistry of Our Environment, CHEM-1000 includes laboratory experiments that teach the concepts and practical aspects of recycling plastics and metals.
CCRI advertises its Recycling Program with posters displayed prominently throughout the college. Scroll below the poster to read the details of the program.
Faculty and staff offices are equipped with containers for the collection of all types of office paper. This category includes writing paper of all colors, letterhead, envelopes including those with plastic windows, Post-It notes, non-glossy brochures, carbonless paper, copier paper, computer paper, notepad paper, bound reports, newspapers, magazines manila envelopes, manila file folders, soft and hard cover books and telephone books.
Corrugated cardboard boxes and paperboard constitute a significant portion of CCRI's trash. Cardboard and paperboard should not be thrown into regular refuse receptacles but should be left next to them. From there they are collected by CCRI's maintenance personnel, flattened and placed in a special collection container. Do not recycle greasy pizza or other food-stained boxes.
Lubricating oils can pollute drinking water wells if poured into the ground or can contaminate large areas of Narragansett Bay or other waterways if poured into a storm drain. Used crankcase oil from the vehicle maintenance garages is collected in specially labeled metal drums in the garages. CCRI has a contract with a local licensed oil recycling company that pumps the oil out of the drums and either refines it into clean oil or sells it for blending with fuel oil as an energy source. See CCRI's Used Oil Management Plan.
Burned-out fluorescent tubes and other specialty lights such as mercury vapor and high-pressure sodium lights are stored in special areas by the electricians and other trained personnel who change burned-out bulbs. These may not be legally put in a trash landfill because they contain mercury. At CCRI, they are stored in labeled containers and taken away by a Universal Waste Disposal contractor. At a federally-licensed recycling facility the fluorescent lights are crushed and separated into their recyclable components, glass, aluminum, elemental mercury and light-emitting phosphors.
Computer equipment that is obsolete or no longer needed is removed from offices by maintenance staff and stored in a secure location. CCRI has a contract with a licensed recycling agency that recycles the environmentally dangerous components, particularly the large quantities of lead found in soldered connections and monitor radiation shields.
Special labeled bins are set out for collecting aluminum cans, tin cans glass bottles and plastic bottles.
If you have questions for the recycling contractor, call CleanScape at 401-461-1766 or visit the CleanScape website at http://www.cleanscape.com/. If you have questions about procedures at CCRI, call the Physical Plant Director for your campus. For the Flanagan Campus, call Daniel Farrell at 401-333-7047. For the Knight Campus, call Michael Archetto at 401-825-1177. For the Liston Campus, call either Mr. Farrell or Mr. Archetto. For the Newport County Campus, call Robert Considine at 401-851-1606.
Information on recycling in Rhode Island can be viewed on the Rhode Island Resource Recycling corporation web page at www.rirrc.org. From this introductory page there are links to Recycling in the Workplace, Household Waste Disposal and Used Automotive Oil Management. For those interested in learning more, the EPA maintains an educational website at http://www.epa.gov/ on the recycling of used electronic equipment and other wastes. You may also call your town hall for details of your community's participation in the OSCAR program
Until recently, recycling programs were administered in this state by the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) through its Ocean State Cleanup and Recycling (OSCAR) Commercial Recycling Program. Since early 2001, recycling programs are being handled by the Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation at 62 Shun Pike, Johnston, RI 02919. Their telephone number is 401-942-1430 and website address is www.rirrc.org.
For recycling of household computer equipment, the state of Rhode Island has a contract with RIRRC (Rhode Island Resource Recovery Corporation) for the collection and recycling of used computer equipment. The first such collection, held in November 2000, netted 87 tons of obsolete computers and related materials that might have otherwise ended up in the Central Landfill. For information on disposal and recycling of your personal computer equipment, call RIRRC at 401-942-1430 or visit their website at www.rirrc.org.