On average, Ashesi uses approximately 8,750 sheets of paper per week. A survey conducted on campus indicated that almost all the paper used ends up being simply thrown away. What may not be so obvious to most students is that by wasting paper they are also wasting trees and impacting the environment.

Some students of Ashesi University have recognised this as a major problem and have taken the initiative to start a recycling project. The scheme was launched on Monday the 30th of November and since then has been running on campus. Dubbed the Ghana Recycling Project, its aim is to develop recycling attitudes among Ghanaians, beginning with those in the Ashesi community. The project will start by recycling paper waste and, with the cooperation of Ghanaians and other sympathisers, there are plans to move on to plastic, glass and other recyclable items.

So far, it appears that others on the campus are buying into the concept of recycling. In an interview with one of the pioneers of the project, Kwabena Owusu-Adjei of Ashesi’s 2010 Class said “it broke my heart to see all that paper going to waste, knowing it could be reused”. In his opinion the effort required to sustain this project was a very small price to pay to save paper and trees in the long run. Another student, Deladem Ladson, also of 2010, felt similarly. “Seeing waste paper lying around is a sign of irresponsibility,” he said. “It makes the environment look unclean.” Expressing a sentiment which was shared by fellow project members Phillip Alimo and Derrick Darkwa, both of 2012, Deladem stated that he looked forward to an even greater response from the student body over time.

The students have enlisted the help of Super Paper Products Company Limited, a paper making firm, to assist them in the recycling exercise. The company pays 27 pesewas for each kilo of waste paper it collects. Members of the project were unanimous in their view that the exercise was not about money, however. Instead, they hope to make Ashesi University and, in the near future, Ghana as a whole, a better place by saving as many trees as possible. As more members of the Ashesi community begin making use of the new recycling bins placed around campus, this project is certa