A University of Nebraska–Lincoln recycling project has received a $199,962 grant from the Nebraska Environmental Trust.
Prabhakar Shrestha, sustainability coordinator in facilities management and planning, leads the project.
The university is committed to promoting sustainable lifestyles and creating a sustainable campus with smart and efficient campus operations and business practices. It has been recycling an average of 41.5% of waste over the last five years. However, its goal is to meet the city of Lincoln’s recycling goal of 50% by 2022. Internal surveys demonstrate the need for better signage, uniform recycling bins and regular service.
With the NET grant, Nebraska aims to develop a comprehensive and efficient recycling operation by purchasing 450 recycling stations worth $769,835. The goals of the project are multiple: provide a standardized set of guidelines to all university personnel for recycling and solid waste management; provide a standardized set of recycling stations at pre-identified locations on campus; provide associated standardized signs, posters and messaging; and engage and educate university faculty, staff and students about better pro-environmental behavior such as recycling. The Office of Sustainability will oversee the project.
The project is one of 118 receiving $20 million in grant awards from the NET this year. Of these, 73 were new applications and 45 are carry-over projects.
The Nebraska Legislature created the NET in 1992. Using revenue from the Nebraska Lottery, the trust has provided more than $328 million in grants to more than 2,300 projects across the state. Anyone – citizens, organizations, communities, farmers and businesses – can apply for funding to protect habitat, improve water quality and establish recycling programs in Nebraska. The NET works to preserve, protect and restore the state’s natural resources for future generations.