Ten years ago the Crimson and Green commitment was signed, making the university the first in the state. Larger commitment initiatives prove effective, however, the student behavioral impact is lacking.
Consensus amoung scientists is that climate change worsened Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. As the largest university in Oklahoma, students have the opportunity to make a difference by setting an example for the rest of the state. Influencing as it did ten years ago.
“I am to an extent, anti-recycling, this is why. We should reduse and reuse first. And then we should recycle. … It needs to be all three of the Rs, but they’re in order for a reason,” said Matthew Rom, Custodial and Housekeeping Services, Refuse and Recycling and Indoor Pest Control Manager.
Rom went on to explain the impact of the campus community. A behavioral standard could potentially shift current opinions.
Instead of repurchasing bottled water, utilitize the refill stations.
When recycling bins overfill, throw it in the next available bin.
If recycling is not a priority, throw it away in the appropriate bins.
“If garbage is thrown in with recyclables, the whole bag has to be thrown out because of contamination. The intentions of students who do recycle are worthless when we have to throw everything,” said Greg Brezinski, Refuse and Recycling Supervisor.
The OU Recycling Center has six employees, responsible for upkeep and handling the entirety of campus and public events like football games.
OUs’ 30,000 strong has a chance to change behaviors by setting those trends.