Student waste endangers local wildlife – Scot Scoop News
As Carlmont once again welcomes students for in-person learning, many have seen an increasing amount of campus trash become part of the daily landscape.
Every year Carlmont faces waste issues on campus, but this year is unlike any other.
“It definitely got worse, of the seven years I’ve worked here it’s the worst year,” said Jerome Clarke, director of plant operations and maintenance at Carlmont.
Most of the waste is usually located in common student dining areas such as the student union, quad biking, campus rooms, and football bleachers, left after lunch time.
“I think [the student’s] the mentality is it’s the janitor’s job, so they just leave it there, ”Clarke said.
Many students lack the self-discipline to care for and avoid throwing away their trash, relying on the prospect of someone else picking it up for them.
“I mean, I know it’s their job, but since it’s so disgusting, they shouldn’t be picking up the amount of garbage they do; It’sdefinitely not fair to the janitors and makes the campus worse, ”said Arya Musteata, a senior.
Since Carlmont started offering for free school meals, numerous students enjoy easy access to free food, and then drop their leftovers on lunch tables or throw their trash on the floor.
“I feel like it’s very disrespectful to the school, it shows how ungrateful people are, especially since most of the garbage around campus is food; I don’t think they appreciate the importance and privilege of being able to get free lunches, ”said second year student Chloe Chun.
The waste from these lunches not only litter the campus, but also poses a threat to local wildlife. Located in the Belmont Hills, Carlmont is home to a number of animals including deer, snakes and many types of birds. These animals can consume leftover plastic due to food waste and its packaging surrounding parts of campus.
“They eat all the plastic, all the bags, like anything that has food in it, they will eat it,” Clarke said.
When ingested by animals, plastic can be extremely dangerous to wildlife and can cause serious health problems and even death. If the garbage is not picked up, it does not go away. According to Shopping carts, plastic bags, water bottles and straws can take over 450 years to decompose.
Over the years at Carlmont, Grant Steunenberg, one of the Assistant Administrative Directors (AVP) has tried various methods to alert students to the seriousness of leaving garbage on campus through seminars, Recology presentations and simply by talking to students who are caught in the act of leaving their garbage behind.
Although these methods initially seemed effective, the problem is still present on campus.
Steunenberg accepted that it is difficult to educate students to be more attentive to waste, however, without serious emphasis on the effects of waste on the part of the administration, it becomes evident that the problem will likely continue in the near future. to come up.
As students advocate for change on social media through photos of trash left in lunch spaces, it’s clear through the amount of trash on campus that student mindsets need to change in order to tackle the problem. . Preserving the wildlife community in Carlmont is essential to help preserve our environment.
“I don’t know if there is a way to really educate people about how bad it is for our environment to leave garbage lying around,” it’s a pretty basic concept, but I think for a lot of people it just feels like someone else will take care of it, ”Steunenberg said.