UC-Irvine-RecycleMania.jpg The annual waste reduction event RecycleMania is headed toward the final stretch, and many colleges have started off strongly amongst the competition with the goal of recycling the most on a per-capita basis in the eight-week competition period. One of these colleges is University of California – Irvine. UCI is in the competition division of the event, having pledged a variety of waste-minimization techniques that allow the campus to get involved in different ways. The campus is taking part in an active program to sell and donate unused campus property, replacing paper documents with more eco-friendly alternatives whenever possible, promoting the use of printer settings and paper-reduction software and offering discounts to those using reusable mugs and supplying reusable dinnerware in dining facilities. UCI is also actively educating students and faculty on waste minimization practices through orientation programs and by setting up public displays and giving presentations to different groups. Beyond RecycleMania, the campus is working toward the goal of achieving zero waste by 2020. UCI ended week five of the competition with a recycling rate of nearly 70%. The campus is currently in fourth place for the Grand Champion division, or overall rating, out of 248 eligible schools. It is near the top in every division of the competition as well, and even number three in the Gorilla division, wherein the highest tonnage of recycled paper, cardboard, bottles and cans is calculated, out of 368 schools. UCI’s overall greenhouse gas reduction amounts to 1,264 metric tons of CO2 equivalent, or 248 cars off the road. That’s impressive in just a five-week span. The results are looking excellent for UCI after the first five weeks, but the competition will only get tighter over the last three weeks. If UCI keeps up the good work, it could end up topping many of the ranking lists in 2014’s RecycleMania.