UBC Undergraduate Research

The Effects of Using Memes to Reduce Contamination in Compost Lee, Brian; Lee, Jared; Wong, Amanda; Wong, Chalmers


Contaminated compost bins are a huge obstacle in the goal when striving for a greener environment. For our research question, we asked “How can informative, eye-catching posters influence the number of contaminants in compost bins?” We hypothesized that residents are significantly more likely to compost without contaminants (i.e plastic bags) when composting in a building with posters promoting correct composting behaviours compared to a building without posters. Our study was conducted on the residents of the Ponderosa Cedar and Oak House residences. To test our hypothesis, we posted a number of posters that promote proper composting techniques and raised awareness of plastic contamination in the compost bins in the compost room of the Cedar House while leaving the Oak House compost room free of intervention. Over the course of two weeks, we collected data from the Ponderosa Cedar and Oak House residences and found that our intervention had no statistically significant effect on the proper composting rates. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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