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New beverage container recycling system in Mundet campus

The new returning system is part of the project Retorna UB –from the Sustainability Plan of the University of Barcelona.

The new returning system is part of the project Retorna UB –from the Sustainability Plan of the University of Barcelona.

05/12/2016

Institucional

Mundet campus has set up a new system for the beverage container recycling, which aims to improve the amount of recovered residue in the buildings of the faculties of Education and Psychology.
From now on, whenever someone buys a drink from the vending machines in Mundet campus, its price includes a 0,10€ deposit which can be returned when the bottle is returned in a recycling machine, located in the Ponent and Migdia buildings. The goal is to give residues a bigger value, preventing them from being discarded and mixed with the rest of waste, and recovering raw materials: plastic and metal.

 

This system is similar to DRS (deposit-refund systems), used in many countries around the world and which allow recovering more than a 90% of beverage containers. The main difference is that this is a closed system; it doesn’t allow recovery of metallic deposit so as to avoid discarded residues coming from outside the UB. This recovery is done with the UB card and the returned money can be used to buy new drinks in the vending machines of the campus.

The new returning system is part of the project Retorna UB –from the Sustainability Plan of the University of Barcelona, in which all actions aiming to improve recycling or reducing residues in the UB buildings are included. The previous experience was the GMI project, an initiative promoted by the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, ASCAME and Funditec, in the Diagonal Campus which included a system of annual raffles among people who put containers in the recycling machines. In the conclusions of that pilot project, they noted that the incentive to recycle (awards) is not enough to improve the recovery of containers, but it is necessary to give a value to the residues with solutions such as refunds when returning containers.

The new recycling system has the collaboration of Serunion, franchise of the service of beverage vending machines at the University of Barcelona, in the current contract for the provision of this service.

Further information is available here.

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