The new scheme is based on the principle that "the waste must pass as few hands as possible", which in practice means that instead of each individual group or employee having their own trash can, you will throw the apple hull and old post-it's in waste batteries located in central areas of campus. The extra steps to the trash can are good - not only for the environment but also for our health when we have to move further than before to get rid of the garbage.
For a long time, more students and staff on the three campuses have wished for a new waste sorting system. “It helps us to minimize the AAU's CO2 emissions, with a focus on even more sustainable operations”, says campus director Mogens Juul Møller from AAU Campus Service. Campus Service is responsible for the overall handling with sorting, collection and administration of the scheme, adapted to the respective municipal models in Esbjerg, Copenhagen and Aalborg.
New waste tanks on campus
In the spring of 2020, an agreement was made with Joca - a supplier for buried outdoor waste tanks, which is expected to be installed from July to September. However, the installation depends on the pending authority processing by the Municipalities.
Waste tanks will beautify the campus area
The newly purchased waste tanks can contain up to 5 m³ of waste, which means fewer visits by garbage trucks and thus reduced fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
However, there are many benefits by getting the garbage under the ground, including increased waste capacity and fewer empties.
Project manager Vibeke Ulriis-Nordberg says – “The change beautifies the campus areas at AAU, as we go from the large, green containers to waste tanks, which take up less space in the area. Furthermore, we expect that we will experience less noise, odor and pollution nuisances as many of the small waste containers as well as the garbage truck and the waste compactor station will be removed.”
According to the supplier Joca, the waste is compressed in the waste tanks using the waste's own weight and thus the capacity of the buried waste solution is increased by up to 20 percent. When the waste is stored cool and dark underground, the odor nuisance is significantly minimized. At the same time, the waste tanks act as a safeguard so that rats, gulls and other pests cannot get hold of the waste.
Waste tanks sizes will be based on the quantities of waste produced in the area and the waste tanks will be located close to each building and adjacent to good solid transportation routes. Hereby, the locations accommodates the new infrastructure in waste management.
The sorting of our waste is ensured through the new scheme for waste management
The tanks have chambers that separate the waste in the same way as the waste batteries in buildings, with waste categories such as paper, plastic, glass, metal, bio waste and residual waste. Thus, the sorting is maintained in the next stages of the waste management and enables a better recycling of AAU’s waste. Overall, it all helps to create a more sustainable operation on campus.
Special waste in the buildings
Other categories of waste, such as large quantities of cardboard and cardboard boxes, hazardous waste, food cartons, textiles, plastics and flamingo, which cannot be handled in the waste batteries, must be transported by the user to a designated place at each building. At the designated place, trolleys for the waste categories will be set up. Thus, the sorting is primarily performed by the users in each building with guidance from Facility Support.