Shippensburg University’s Environmental Club has won a battle to get single-stream recycling back at Bard Townhouses.
During March through May of this year, the Environmental Club used its own resources to collect the recycling at Bard.
According to Sarah Komisar, president of the Environmental Club, the club attempted to get a truck from the university for the recycle collection, but was unable to.
Members of the club used their own vehicles. Professor Ben Culbertson, club adviser, used his bio-diesel-fueled truck for some weeks.
“We found that Bard residents were filling all 15 of the barrels every week that the Environmental Club placed,” Culbertson said.
“Some weeks they were overflowing.”
In other weeks, the club’s vice president Jim Mason used his truck for collection.
The students would collect the recycling and dump it in the big recycling container by the commuter lot in front of Old Main.
The club spent $400 of its budget for 20 32-gallon bins. It was up to volunteers to collect the recycling weekly. Students recycled an estimated 5,120 gallons of recyclables during the eight-week trial.
When students went home for the summer, there were no vehicles or manpower to use and Bard did not collect recycling themselves.
The recycling at Bard was halted for the summer.
Determined to find a solution, members of the Environmental Club began looking into every local and state ordinance law on recycling.
Due to Shippensburg’s high population from the students at the university, the township received a waiver from the state so it is not required to recycle.
However, Shippensburg Township had already set up a system for single-stream recycling, and decided to mandate it to residents.
In this case, the township overrode the state. That means Bard was risking a $100-$1,000 fine.
The Environmental Club simply contacted Bard to remind them of the mandate, and Bard set up a meeting within a week with the owner to implement recycling at Bard.
Komisar said it was just a case of the owners not realizing the law, which is somewhat complicated by the state’s waiver.
“Our conversations with the residents at Bard suggested they wanted recycling and they asked if we were putting the recycling containers back this year,” Culbertson said.
“That’s when the club learned that apartment complexes in the township were required by law to provide recycling.”
Bard contacted its trash collector to add recycling to its services. Komisar said the Environmental Club plans to contact each site manager from off-campus housing within the township to inform them that they are breaking the law by not recycling.
Creekside, Britton Court, Madison, Brookside and Stone Ridge Commons are among the off-campus housing sites that the Environmental Club plans to contact about the recycling mandate.