At Purdue, we combine our love of sports with our drive to be more sustainable. The Office of Campus Master Planning & Sustainability launched the Tailgate Recycling Program in 2012. The Purdue Boilermakers football program, part of the Big Ten Conference, generates home game attendance of more than 200,000 loyal fans. Given that participation level, Tailgate Team Recycling has some great potential. During the inaugural 2012 season, CMP&S collected a total of 13,380 pounds of mixed recyclable material, with an average diversion rate of 16.7% per game. We went from a low of 5.3% diversion rate at the first game to a high of 18.3% diversion rate for the last game of the season.
From that season we have grown tremendously. This past 2015 football season saw a total of 30,000 pounds of waste be diverted for an average diversion rate of 28%! We are looking to improve on that number this year and we need your help in becoming a sustainability ambassador. Sustainability Ambassadors interact with fans and hand out recycling bags at the entrances to the tailgate parking areas. Ambassadors are an important part of improving the recycling rate at football games. In addition to community service hours, volunteers will receive a t-shirt, lunch, and a concourse pass to get into the game. The volunteers are to report to the Tailgate Team Headquarters 3 hours before kickoff to receive weekend specific details.