The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

EIU’s path to sustainability

Prince Pappoe
Daniel Douglas, program coordinator at the school of extended learning, chairs the Coles County Sustainability Committee meeting centered on tackling the lack of recycling in the county on Wednesday afternoon.

Renewables is a topic on people’s minds when it comes to where recycling goes to in the Coles County area.

The Coles County Sustainability Committee met on just exact topic.  

“I am hoping that we can live in a more sustainable environment overall and so, for now, we have determined that a good place to start would just be doing some research into recycling and seeing how we could get more people in the area to recycle,” Program Coordinator, Academy of Lifelong Learning Daniel Douglas said.  

The committee discovered that there is a sufficient number of places to recycle, it just depends on people being motivated enough to recycle.

“There are some places that we can go to, Harris metal takes metals, and EIASE has a recycling program and between those two they cover a lot of the bases. We need to do the research and find out how to get more people to participate in those programs and to see what they are doing so that we can reach a broader audience,” Douglas said.  

There are also issues with recycling on Eastern’s campus as most of the items that are recycled go to Chicago and CCAR in Flora Illinois.  

According to Director of Facilities Plan and Management Timothy Zimmer, Eastern pays CCAR $20,000 a year to accept recycled products from Televisions and other electronics, as well as paper and cardboard. Eastern’s recycling program is partially funded by student fees.

Zimmer also said Eastern pays Waste Management to handle plastic, glass, aluminum and steel materials as part of a contract with the recycling company in Chicago and the items are driven up to Chicago from Easterns campus.  

This helps lead the discussion on what happens to recycled materials and the background on what happens to the waste at Eastern.  

This also helps people view this as an opportunity for themselves to join other Coles County residents as part of the issue on how people can start small in the local communities and hopefully have a significant impact on the environment. 

“So, it is not so much a Coles County issue as a worldwide issue, but you must start in Coles County or in your local community as it may be, to be able to work backwards and we all must work together at the end of the day,” Douglas said.  

Douglas is hopeful that people will join the conversation on how as a citizen of Coles County anyone can help with waste reduction and recycling. 

Also, that people understand why sustainability is important in the community.  

“November of 2023 is when the next meeting of the sustainability committee will be and that will be when we’re going to kind of report back,” Daniel said. “Each of us on the research that we’ve done to get some history on what the situation is as far as recycling goes.”


Chandler Smith can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected]. 

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Chandler Smith
Chandler Smith, Reporter
Chandler Smith is a senior broadcast journalism major. He previously served as a reporter at The News.

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