The expanded version of the Auburn University Battery Recycling Program began as a project of the Peers Network. After conducting sustainability assessments within their units, the Peers Ambassadors all wanted to find a more sustainable way to deal with the volume of batteries consumed during the course of university operations. It didn’t take long to develop a solution, as Risk Management & Safety (RMS) had representation within the Peers Network, the Ambassadors stepped up to lead efforts in their units, and the Office of Sustainability had staff to help with the operational piece of expanding battery collection.
The expanded Battery Recycling Program officially launched in January 2019. Every three weeks, student staff from the Office of Sustainability exchange empty bins for those with batteries. They then bring the bins back to Langdon Annex for processing — where they weigh the batteries from each building, record the weight, and then consolidate them into as few buckets as possible. The staff from the Office of Sustainability then takes the batteries to RMS’ Environmental Health & Safety Building, where the batteries collected by the Office of Sustainability are combined with those collected by RMS staff. At the RMS facility, the two units work together to sort the batteries by type and package them for shipment, and then RMS staff ships the batteries off for recycling to various vendors, depending on the battery type.