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Indiana schools compete in RecycleMania

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Several Hoosier universities earned bragging rights after this year's inaugural Indiana RecycleMania competition, an offshoot of the nationwide RecycleMania challenge.

On Thursday, May 12, the Indiana Recycling Coalition (IRC) honored participating schools from across the state with the Indiana RecycleMania Awards during its annual conference and exhibition. In a press release Thursday from the IRC:

"The Indiana Recycling Coalition is thrilled to provide an opportunity for Indiana's RecycleMania participants to compete directly with each other. We hope that the challenge between in-state schools coupled with the local awards program will help grow this friendly competition leading to long-term gains for Indiana's college and university campus recycling programs," said Carey Hamilton, Executive Director of the Indiana Recycling Coalition.

President and CEO of Keep America Beautiful (KAB) Matt McKenna and Stacy Wheeler, co-founder of RecycleMania, presented the Indiana RecycleMania awards, bestowing first place honors to four universities across eight categories.

University of Evansville won: Grand Champion, determined by the percentage of overall waste recycled during a 10-week period, with 52.06%; Per Capita Classic, determined by the total amount of recyclables in pounds collected per person, with 15.45 lbs.; and Targeted Material in pounds per person for Paper, with 12.49 lbs.

Indiana University in Bloomington took the Waste Minimization category, determined by the lowest overall amount of waste (both recyclables and trash) per person over 10 weeks, with 33.55 lbs., and the Targeted Material category in Bottles in Cans with 3.94 lbs. per person.

Indiana State University was awarded first place in Targeted Material for Corrugated Cardboard, with 4.5 lbs. per person.

Purdue University's main campus won the Gorilla Prize, determined by the highest cumulative weight of recyclables over 10 weeks, with 765,159 lbs., in addition to the Targeted Material category in Food Service Organics with 2.11 lbs. per person.

Matt McKenna of Keep America Beautiful cheered the efforts of Indiana's students, saying that "by increasing campus recycling, all participating schools are winners." The president and CEO continued, "KAB is proud of our ongoing relationship with the RecycleMania program and look forward to making the competition bigger and better in coming years."

The national RecycleMania challenge spans an 8-week period and pits colleges against one another to ramp up on-campus recycling initiatives. Having just finished its 11th year, the countrywide program managed to collect over 91 million pounds of recyclables and organics from 630 schools.

For more information on the competition, visit www.recyclemaniacs.org.

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