Trends Shaping Higher Education: Waste Collection

Trend Toward Cost Savings and Efficiency

Cost Savings and EfficiencyThe smart litter receptacle is coming to a campus near you. It’s smart enough, in fact, to save an estimated 20 percent to 40 percent on litter and recycling collection expenses. Knowing that a large university can easily generate 9,000,000 pounds of waste in a year, the savings potential is hard to ignore.

Sensing technology and a web interface integrate to become an intelligent waste management system. Using GPS and other sensors, the receptacles can continuously monitor and transmit fill level, temperature, weight, location and more to a cloud-based portal.

Traditional static systems allow for some receptacles to overfill before they are collected — an aesthetic and olfactory nuisance, for sure — while others that sit empty are collected anyway. This new approach allocates resources only where and when they are needed. It not only saves time, it decreases fuel costs, carbon footprints and unsightly waste overflows. This technology is available in both new receptacles and as a retrofit for the thousands currently in use.

About the Author

Emma Skalka is vice president of Sales and Marketing at Victor Stanley in Dunkirk, MD.