Caring for the environment now goes hand-in-hand with providing the best care for kids at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. SWACO and Nationwide Children’s have announced a partnership that is designed to reduce waste, expenses associated with that waste and promote recycling at the hospital’s main campus and more than 20 off-site locations in and around Columbus.
SWACO Executive Director Ron Mills sees many benefits for Nationwide Children’s as well as other medical facilities in Greater Columbus. “When we reached out to Children’s we found a willing partner. As our waste auditors studied Children’s we found that the Hospital was already recycling 320 tons of paper and cardboard annually.”
Tim Schooley, director of Environmental Services at Children’s, says he is committed to boosting that amount by at least an additional 100 tons a year.
“This is the kind of commitment we need from all institutions and businesses in Franklin County,” added Mills. He believes the waste audit done for Nationwide Children’s could serve as a template for all medical facilities in central Ohio.
“What started out as a grassroots effort has now blossomed into a formal recycling program with very little investment by the hospital. Employees have volunteered to take control of recycling efforts in their work areas. They collect paper, bottles, cans, plastic and all other recyclables into a co-mingled trash can that can be easily transported to their recycling area. The recycling committee feels confident they can exceed the goal of an additional 100 ton reduction easily,” said Schooley.
SWACO’s waste audit shows that Nationwide Children’s can reduce its environmental footprint by recycling more on the business side of the hospital. Of the projected 856 tons of paper and paper products generated, the hospital is recycling about 191 tons of cardboard and 129 tons of paper for shredding, totaling approximately 320 tons. Therefore, the primary target for expanding the program would be to capture more of the non-confidential office papers and related papers that are generated in the office areas, as well as plastics bottles and cans throughout the campus and its off-site locations.
SWACO is The Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio. We serve Columbus and Franklin County, Ohio with innovative waste reduction and recycling projects. We believe that today’s throwaways are the foundation for tomorrow. SWACO also offers residential recycling opportunities through 225 recycling drop off-locations, at major sporting and entertainment venues, at Columbus City Schools, The Columbus Arts Festival and other locations. SWACO provides leadership and advice for businesses wishing to begin recycling and waste reduction programs as well. Our operations include the Franklin County Landfill, three transfer stations, and other programs. More on SWACO at www.swaco.org.