Kirkwood Goes Green with Environmental Initiatives

By Heather Hubbs, Reporter

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa -- This week, many people will work on environmentally friendly projects in honor of Earth Day. At Kirkwood Community College, they strive to make every day Earth Day, and the school has a variety of initiatives that are helping the campus go green.

Just through recycling, Kirkwood kept 71 tons of materials out of the landfill. Stations have been established at The Cafe on campus to help keep even more recyclable materials out of landfills. The stations allow students to divide their waste amongst three bins: trash, recycling, and compost.

Behind the food line at The Café, workers have been composting food waste since day one, but they only recently started asking students and staff to do the same. Officials admit it is challenging getting everyone on board.

"80 percent of the waste we produce goes directly to compost, I would say out here probably 10 to 15 percent, so still have a long way to go to get customers involved," said Kyle Davis, General Manager at The Cafe.

The college is working to educate the public on recycling and composting so people don't just dump their entire tray into the trash.

Food isn't the only thing that's compostable at The Cafe. Serving items like cups and plates are made from biodegradable materials and can be composted. Everything that goes into the compost bin is picked up by a company called Green RU, which turns it into rich soil used on farm land and in landscaping.
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