After reporting in March about the horrific trash management that accompanied University of Georgia tailgating festivities, it pains me as a UGA alum to admit that in-state rival Georgia Tech seems to have devised a vastly superior approach to collegiate waste collection. Launched in 2008, the school’s Game Day Recycling program recruits student volunteers to help collect recyclables from thousands of football fans as they are tailgating, walking through the campus or inside the stadium during the game. Last season, the program netted 19.3 tons of recyclables in just six games.
“Tailgaters” distribute large blue bags to tailgating fans across campus. Once filled with recyclables, the bags can simply be left on the ground for collection. “Gate keepers” stationed at Bobby Dodd Stadium’s 10 entrance gates encourage arriving fans to recycle outside food and beverage containers (which are not allowed inside). Finally, “stadium attendants” instruct fans inside the stadium to use strategically placed recycling bins and clarify what can and can’t be recycled. Most of the volunteers complete their work before kickoff.
Waste Management has been recruited to assist with this season’s effort. And as an added incentive, a roving video crew films fans who demonstrate exceptionally green behavior for broadcast on the stadium’s JumboTron during the game.
My bulldogs clearly need to learn some new tricks.