Junior News Editor
Several solar powered garbage cans have been added to campus this year in an effort to increase energy efficiency.
Produced by BigBelly, a global company that focuses exclusively on waste management, the garbage cans make trash collection easier in numerous ways. The trash cans assist with compacting. This makes it possible for the can to hold five times as much garbage as a regular bin of identical size and shape, meaning they do not need to be emptied as often.
In addition to containing more trash, when a can is close to being full, it sends out an electronic signal to Hudson Valley maintenance computers identifying which can needs to be emptied.
“From an efficiency standpoint, they do take longer to fill, and it saves on manpower because my guys don’t have to stop as often,” said Richard Edwards, director of the Physical Plant. “It is a more efficient way for my guys to pick up trash because they know where they have to stop and where they don’t.”
Along with being energy efficient, the cans also are environmentally-friendly. Perhaps the most obvious physical difference between typical garbage bins and the BigBelly containers would be the solar panels plastered on top of the cans.
Currently, there are six BigBelly cans on campus, located outside the Marvin Library and Student Center. Edwards hopes to add more in the future: “We only have six, and some of that is driven by financial constraints; they’re four thousand dollars apiece. We’d love to get more, but right now it’s not in the budget.”