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Sprint Electronic Recycling and Food Recovery Programs to be Honored by EPA Region 7 as Nation Observes Earth Day, April 22

Release Date: 04/21/2014
Contact Information: EPA Region 7 - Kris Lancaster, 913-551-7557, lancaster.kris@epa.gov: Sprint - Marci Verbrugge, 913-794-6319, marci.j.verbrugge@sprint.com

Environmental News

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Lenexa, Kan., April 21, 2014) - EPA Region 7 Administrator Karl Brooks will join Sprint officials on Tuesday, April 22 – Earth Day – to present Sprint the EPA WasteWise National Partner of the Year Award for Very Large Companies. During his visit to Sprint’s headquarters campus in Overland Park, Kan., Brooks will commend Sprint for reducing its volume of solid waste and view first-hand its innovative recycling and food recovery programs.

Sprint has made significant strides in protecting the environment through waste reduction, reuse and recycling; environmentally preferable purchasing; education and community involvement:


    • Responsible reuse and recycling of electronic waste was a major component of Sprint’s Network Vision plan and decommissioning of its nationwide iDEN network, averting more than 175 million pounds of electronic waste from landfills while saving over $275 million in cost through reuse and redeployment of equipment.
    • Sprint HQ compost efforts in 2012 diverted 54 tons of food waste from landfills. The addition of two cafeteria food pulpers and food waste collection in break rooms in 2013 has increased collection to 91 tons.
    • The launch of Sprint’s national waste and recycle program in 2012 increased mixed recycling by nearly 140 percent. Expansion of the program in 2013 drove an additional 143 percent increase in waste diversion.
    • Since 2010, Sprint has diverted more than 74,000 tons of useful material from landfills. Sprint’s efforts reduced greenhouse gas emissions in an amount equal to the annual emissions of more than 26,000 passenger vehicles.
A presentation of the National WasteWise Award and tour of the Sprint recycling areas, at 6450 Sprint Parkway in Overland Park, Kan., will be held for news media from 9:15 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, April 22.

WHO: Karl Brooks, EPA Region 7 Administrator, and Gene Agee, Sprint Vice President of Procurement and Real Estate

WHAT: EPA Region 7 Administrator Karl Brooks will present an award and join Sprint officials for a walking tour of the company’s recycling areas.

WHERE: Sprint, 6450 Sprint Parkway, Overland Park, Kan. 66251. News media may park in the circle drive at 6450 Sprint Parkway.

WHEN: 9:15 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., April 22, 2014

Visuals - Award presentation; employees participating in annual electronic waste (e-waste) collection event on the Sprint campus; kitchen staff engaging in sustainable food recovery practices; and tour of recycling areas.

    • E-Waste Collection Event - This free service is provided to campus associates every year. Participants simply drive through the drop-off line and trained Sprint volunteers unload the electronic waste for responsible disposal. Last year the event generated more than 80 full wooden pallets, or 42,000 pounds, of personal household e-waste.
    • Commercial-grade Food Pulper - See this equipment in action as the pulper processes compostable kitchen waste into a reusable ingredient for landscape mulch. Commercial pulpers decrease food waste by as much as 80 percent and decrease the use of potable water by 40 percent.
    • Employee Break Room Recycle Centers - Sprint makes it easy for employees to recycle a variety of items at work every day, including batteries, food waste, phones and electronics.
Background - Responsible reuse and recycling of e-waste was a major component of Sprint’s Network Vision plan and recent decommissioning of its nationwide iDEN network. Sprint, a member of the Environmental Protection Agency’s SMM Electronics Challenge, is leading what is likely the single largest e-waste project in the world today.

Sprint has taken an active stance on operational waste in its commercial, retail and network buildings. The company recycled nearly 30,000 tons of waste (including batteries, office paper, cardboard, plastic, metals, glass, compost, etc.) in 2012, compared to 6,400 tons in 2011.

For years, Sprint Dining Services has continually reduced its food waste. Dining Services uses cage-free eggs, many locally grown foods, biodegradable cups, 100-percent recycled napkins and compostable straws, and practices organic composting. Sprint also features a tray-less cafeteria, bulk condiments, and no-rinse dishwashing products.

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