Game On!

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The University of Rochester has officially registered for the EPA’s Game Day Challenge for the third year in a row. So . . .  game on!

If you are not familiar with this challenge, it is very similar in nature to RecycleMania in that it is a friendly competition between colleges and universities across the nation to promote waste reduction and recycling activities. As you probably guessed from the name, this challenge puts the focus on sporting events. More specifically, each participating school is charged to choose one home football game and track the recycling and waste data during its duration and can include any tailgating and/or activities that surround the game.

Naturally, there is a great deal of planning and promoting that goes into being successful. Some schools get more involved than others with up to hundreds of volunteers who help collect materials, promote the competition, and even sort through the trash to capture material that could be diverted. Take a look at what Penn State’s success story as their games gather fans totaling digits in the six figures!

Here at UR, we have chosen the game that will take place during Meliora Weekend on Saturday, October 13 vs. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. We know this game will be well-attended with the high number of alumni, parents, and visitors who visit UR for Mel weekend. We want to reach as many people as possible to  be successful in sending out the message to reach our goals. Choosing this weekend’s game also allows us to include the All-Varsity Alumni Pre-Game Tailgate from 11am -1pm and the Football Alumni Dinner from 4pm-7pm, both held in the large tent outside of Fauver Stadium. We are also hoping to collect organic material generated from our concession stands to be composted! 

The results and standings this year will be made public in December. Awards will be presented in the following five categories (taken from the gamedaychallenge.org website):

  • Waste Generation

Schools will be ranked based on the per capita weight of waste generated using the following formula:

The school with the lowest per capita waste generation wins.

  • Diversion Rate

Schools will be ranked based on their overall recycling rate which combines trash, recycling, and composting data using the following formula:

The school with the highest recycling rate wins.

  • Greenhouse Gas Reduction

Schools will be ranked on the per capita greenhouse gas reductions associated with their waste reduction achievements. These reductions will be calculated using EPA’s WARM factors programmed in the Re-TRAC system. The per capita reduction will be calculated using the following formula:

The school with the highest greenhouse gas reduction wins.

  • Recycling

Schools will be ranked based on the per capita weight of recyclables using the following formula:

The school with the highest recycling rate wins.

  • Organics Reduction

Schools will be ranked based on the per capita weight of organic waste reduced using the following formula:

The school with the highest organic reduction rate wins.

Last year we truly did awesome!! We ranked #2 in the category of Greenhouse Gas Reduction with a reduction of 0.001187 MTCO2E per person and a total reduction of 3.63 MTCO2E! We also came in as #3 for the Recycling competition with .58 pounds of material recycled per person! Our overall Diversion Rate of 66.41% put us in at 9th place for this portion of the competition.

Stay tuned for results. For more information about the Game Day Challenge vistit http://gamedaychallenge.org/ and http://www.epa.gov/smm/wastewise/challenge/gameday/index.htm.

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