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Real Dawgs Recycle
Blue Bag recycling outreach helps tailgaters stay green on the go.
By Alex Credgington

Dawgs-RecycleThere is a unique energy at UW on football game days. The parking lots are abuzz with students, staff and alumni huddled beneath a colorful array of canopies. They talk and laugh around barbeques, food and games, sharing in the bond of true community. Pre-game tailgating is a tradition at UW, and so is sorting our pre-game waste.

The “Blue Bag” recycling outreach program, run by UW Recycling & Solid Waste, provides bags to pre-game tailgaters to collect their recyclables. In its sixth year, the Blue Bag tradition continues to grow in popularity and impact.

Watch a KOMO News segment of EcoConsumer that mentions the UW blue bags.

In the hours before each home game, a team of student volunteers—led by Recycling & Solid Waste staff—walk the parking lots near Husky Stadium to distribute blue recycling bags to tailgaters and educate fans about recycling at UW.

“Fans have become accustomed to the blue recycling bags,” said Emily Newcomer of UW Recycling & Solid Waste. “They consider the bags a part of their tailgating routine and are glad to see the volunteers.”

BlueBagTailgaters use the bags to collect cans, bottles, plastic cups, paper and cardboard. They can then drop their full bags in any of the conveniently located recycling bins found throughout the parking lot. This all-in-one recycling is the most convenient way to encourage fans to properly dispose of their waste.

This year, the Filipino American Student Association (FASA) committed to helping distribute blue bags for the entire season. They provided enough volunteers, roughly 10-15 per game, to distribute a total of 3,350 blue bags for the season.

“The energy of our volunteers was contagious,” said Newcomer. “It was great to have so many volunteers committed to the recycling effort.”

EPAThis effort to educate fans and encourage pre-game recycling led to a total collection of 33 tons of recyclables from the parking lots alone.

The Blue Bag outreach is a part of a greater waste reduction effort at Husky Stadium. In fact, among PAC-10 schools, the UW has been ranked 1st in game-day waste diversion by the EPA, and was recently named America’s Coolest School by the Sierra Club.

Recycling & Solid Waste is proud to be an integral part of Husky football, both inside and outside of the stadium.

 

See more photos from this article...

Blue Bag 2011


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