DC almost ties with Durham Region on waste diverting

Durham College students divert just about the same percentage of waste as the residents of Durham Region, thanks to a co-mingling program on campus.

The co-mingling program is waste and recyclables combined into one unit, which allows

Durham College to divert 50 per cent of waste, according to Tanya Roberts, sustainability coordinator for Durham College.

The Durham Region is just ahead of DC with a diversion rate of 53 per cent, which is more than 200,000 tonnes.

“Our co-mingling capacity enable us to mix materials for better recycling,” says Roberts, adding the units are made up of different categories.

The categories are a waste section and sections for glass, plastic and paper.

“We’re trying to increase awareness of what’s what,” Roberts says. “People will sometimes treat it as anything and everything, so there are separate categories for recyclables and waste.”

Each of the categories goes through a different process when it is collected.

The waste and recyclables are separated and compacted, while the plastics and paper are compacted and sold to be re-used, says Roberts, adding it allows people to think about their actions.

“Going green is something that enables you to think beyond taking things for granted,” Roberts says.