Going green more efficient and practical

Kelsey Lentz


Before I moved to SDSU last month, I was pretty careless about what I threw in my trash can. Back home, all of my garbage went into one trash can and, at the end of the week, sat at the curb for the trash man to collect. There weren’t many “green” options for me in my small Nebraska town, and I wasn’t too worried about it. As I have adjusted to “larger city living,” I have begun to realize that it is more convenient to give back to the environment than it was for me in the past. My fabulous roommate introduced me to the importance of recycling in every community, and it would be selfish and careless of me to not take advantage of this opportunity here on campus.

Recycling can save a large chunk of change. In my experience, it is a lot easier to buy plastic cups and bowls and throw them away after one use. However, each package of cups or bowls or silverware costs money. When I run out, I have to continuously keep buying more. Some plastic ware is recyclable, but it is unnecessary to produce that much waste. Now that I have started recycling, I bought bowls that I can wash and reuse time after time so that I don’t continuously fill my recycle bin. I buy dish soap less frequently than I did buying one-use dining ware. The soap doesn’t cost much and can also be used for cleaning a number of different things.

Not only can you save money by recycling, you can also earn money. Many people collect their tin and aluminum cans and sell them. Don’t expect to earn a living by selling cans, because they don’t offer much more than five cents per can. Some places pay by the pound. Depending on how much aluminum or tin you have collected, you could make a yearly effort to bring the recyclable items to sell and receive $20.

On campus, it is pretty hard to collect garbage for long amounts of time. There are many on-site places on campus where a person can recycle every day. There is a recycle bin at the Student Union. In Mathews, we have a recycle bin on my floor and also a place to recycle in the lobby. There are many places throughout campus to recycle. Although no money is involved, it is still rewarding to know that you are making an effort to keep this earth clean.

It’s funny how quickly people change. I had no intention of trying to recycle until I realized that I could fractionally reduce the amount of waste in landfills each year by just putting in minimal effort. This planet is our sole foundation and our only home. Anything we proudly keep in our possession, we will protect, including the land in which we all live. It is my hope that the SDSU campus takes a minute out of each day to “GO GREEN!”


Kelsey Lentz is a freshman majoring in pre-pharmacy. She can be emailed at [email protected].