The Office of Sustainability launched a searchable online waste directory that will tell users the most sustainable way to dispose of materials. The widget, known as “Know Before You Throw” details methods of disposal that are specific to Towson’s on-campus waste management abilities. While landfill, recycle and compost are the three options users may anticipate, the widget will also suggest donating as the best method of getting rid of an item.

Search results may encourage users to pass items on to fellow Towson students by donating to the FoodShare or to move-out donation drives. Others will offer a directory of donation sites in Baltimore County and what materials they accept.

Meghan Bennett, a sustainability specialist who has headed the project since May, said the Office would be using the data from the widget to further their waste-minimizing efforts. “We can see what items are being searched the most, so we can do some more targeted education if people are really confused by certain items,” Bennett said. “Or, if there’s an item that people are constantly searching, maybe we should consider removing that from a dining location if there’s a compostable or recyclable alternative.”

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Author: Gabriel Donahue, The Towerlight
Image: Meghan Hudson, The Towerlight