Americans generated over 240 million tons of trash in a year, of which George Mason University contributed about 5,000 tons or close to 9 million pounds of trash. (2009) Not only do landfills take up a good deal of land, making it unsightly, but when garbage decomposes it emits methane, a strong greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. The most effective way of reducing trash is the 3 Rs—reduce, reuse, and then recycle. We can reduce the amount of “stuff” we purchase and make sure that the things we buy are less harmful to the environment. We can reuse and repurpose items already produced, saving money and the environment. Did you know that you can get a discount on campus if you refill with your own reusable cup at Starbucks, Jazzman's, or La Patisserie? Research says that we should be able to recycle up to 75% of our waste. Last year, Mason recycled 15% of its waste—we can do better! If each person at Mason recycles just one aluminum can a day that adds up to 40,000 cans a day! The energy we save by recycling a single aluminum can will run a TV for three hours. That means if all of us were to recycle one can, there would be enough energy to power a TV for almost 14 years!