Monday, March 28, 2011

Is Green really Universal?

Today we went to Islands of Adventures in Orlando. We love both parks and our daughter simply adores the Cat in the Hat and all the Dr. Seuss area. She is also starting to enjoy roller-coasters and the best one for her in the park is the one in the Harry Potter area.

Those parks are always crowded, no matter which day you go to visit. Today was no exception: loads of families, big groups, cheerleaders, small groups, couples, kids, you name it!

We started from the Dr. Seuss area and went up to the Harry Potter area. We noticed that most areas had NO recycling bins and people were just throwing their water and soda bottles and a bunch of other recyclables straight into the regular trash. "Oh, no!" we thought.

Just then we saw an employee of the park going around, pushing a huge half-a-dumpster-size trash that held a small, green, 30-gallon-tall-kitchen-like recycling bin. He was picking some items from the top of the regular trash cans and putting them in his little green bin. It was good to see that he was putting in the recycling bin some of the items thrown in the trash by park-goers, but how much of the recyclables thrown in the regular trash was he really picking up? Would all recyclables items from thousands of people fit in that little green bin? Does that little green bin really work? And even if it works from the recycling perspective, does it help in educating people about recycling?

So we came back from the park and I decided to search the internet a little to see if I could find anything about recycling programs at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. I found a nice site called Green is Universal that talks a lot about sustainability at NBC Universal, green programs, etc. But where are the recycling bins at the park?

That site has a page that states: "Both the movie studio and theme park at Universal Studios in Hollywood continued enhancing their various recycling and reuse efforts with a focus of food waste and composting programs. Through its combined recycling efforts, Universal kept 70% of its waste from landfills."

That is good to know. 70% is a lot, but where are the bins for all those thousands of people to use at the park? Is this part of the enhancements planned for sometime in the future? We left the park puzzled. I am not sure I can really agree now that green is Universal...

Recycle Brevard!