Waste

Introduction

Waste reduction mitigates the need to extract virgin materials from the earth, such as trees and metals. Reducing the generation of waste reduces the flow of waste to incinerators and landfills which produce greenhouse gas emissions, can contaminate air and groundwater supplies, and tend to have disproportionate negative impacts on low-income communities. Source reduction and waste diversion also save institutions costly landfill and hauling service fees. In addition, waste reduction campaigns can engage the entire campus community in contributing to a tangible sustainability goal.

Featured Resources

610 resources

How Signage Increases Recycling Rates

  • University of Illinois at Chicago (IL)

It is well known that recycling can be confusing, especially when deciding which materials are accepted into a recycling program at point of disposal (aka the bin). This can lead ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Four Success Stories and One Big Challenge on the Frontline of Zero Waste Implementation

  • Sheridan College (Ontario) (ON)

Since our college rolled out the Zero Waste program across all four campuses two years ago, we have made significant progress in our waste diversion and reduction. In this session ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Hitting the Reset Button: UT Austin's Process to Implement New Goals Within Existing Diversion Operations

  • University of Texas at Austin (TX)

As a state entity many of UT Austin's waste diversion programs and successes stemmed from state mandates. Due to changing priorities at the university level including the adoption of ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Campus sustainability programs: the role of credibility and motivation

  • Pennsylvania State University (PA)

Most universities now have some kind of sustainability program, but little work has been done to understand what leads to these programs' success or failure. We investigated stakeholder perceptions of ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Football Fans and Waste: Influencing Behavior

  • University of Missouri (MO)

One of the main factors in waste separation at sporting events is gaining the cooperation of fans to dispose of their waste in the appropriate receptacle (compost, recycling or landfill ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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CURC Campus Recycling Workshop

  • Keep America Beautiful (CT)

The College and University Recycling Coalition (CURC) workshop brings together experts in the field of waste reduction and diversion at institutions of higher education. This year's workshop will focus ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Increasing diversion rates in outdoor campus spaces: A case study from Hobart and William Smith Colleges

  • Hobart and William Smith Colleges (NY)

This poster will highlight findings from a student-led campus sustainability intervention project completed during the year-long Sustainable Living and Learning Community (SLLC) Program for first-year students at HWS. Using a ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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The College of Charleston - Zero Waste Initiative

  • College of Charleston (SC)

In 2012 the College of Charleston adopted the goal to dramatically reduce waste from processes on campus, and become a certified Zero Waste Institution by 2025. To achieve this goal ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Colloquium on FEWS Research Needs and Opportunities

  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (DC)

Regardless of all the devoted investments, too often, good, nutritious food ends up getting wasted. In the United States, food is the largest stream of discarded materials, accounting for 21 ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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Clemson University Case Study

  • RRS (MI)

Colleges and universities may be classified as institutions, but they often operate like small cities when it comes to waste and recycling. In order to manage resources wisely from both ...

  • Posted Nov. 18, 2016
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St. John's University - New york students start food waste pulping to double capacity of on-site composting

  • St. John's University, New York (NY)

New for fall 2016 is the addition of students using a food waste pulper which facilitates doubling the capacity of recovering food scraps for on site composting. Since 2012, student ...


Lehigh University Conducts Residential Hall Waste Audit on Campus Sustainability Day

  • Lehigh University (PA)

On October 26, Lehigh University conducted a waste audit of the largest residential hall on campus, M&M. Twelve students participated in the waste audit. The students will use the data ...


Safety Advancement Program

  • Campus Safety, Health, and Environmental Management Association (IN)

CSHEMA’s Safety Advancement Program is designed to help colleges, universities, and other campus environments assess and address health and safety performance. At the core of the Safety Advancement Program ...


Eco Move Out and Eco Move In

  • University of Alberta (AB)
  • Posted Sept. 26, 2016
  • Photographs
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SCI - Waste - UCCS

  • University of Colorado Colorado Springs (CO)
  • Waste Management (TX)

Students volunteer at the annual Mt. Trashmore event. This event provides a visual display of a day's worth of campus trash, which is then sorted to determine how much ...

  • Posted Sept. 23, 2016
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Greenhealth Cost of Ownership (GCO) Calculator

  • Practice Greenhealth (VA)

Total cost of ownership (TCO) is a way for purchasers to assess all the costs associated with a product over its lifetime - from initial purchase through its use, maintenance, and ...


University at Albany Trashion Fashion show

  • University at Albany (NY)

This is a picture of our Trashion Fashion award winners. Trashion Fashion is the annual centerpiece event of Recyclemania. The Office of Sustainability partners with the Office of Residential Life ...

  • Posted Sept. 12, 2016
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EMC 2016 summer ANR team created several short focused videos about recycling and composting intiatives

  • Champlain College (VT)

The Emergent Media Center (EMC) is a Center of Excellence at Champlain College. We hire students to work on projects, the students work with the clients, work under deadlines utilizing ...

  • Posted Sept. 12, 2016
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Waste Minimization at Mohawk College

  • Mohawk College (ON)

Mohawk College campuses feature two-stream waste receptacles throughout grounds and outdoor spaces to encourage recycling.

Mohawk College’s pan-campus electronic waste and battery recycling program collects tens of thousands of ...

  • Posted Sept. 12, 2016
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2016 LIU Post Sustainability Award Recipients

  • LIU Post (NY)

This is a photo of LIU Post's 2016 campus sustainability award recipients and our guest speaker, L. Hunter Lovins. Each spring, LIU Post hosts a sustainability banquet to showcase ...

  • Posted Sept. 12, 2016
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Working with vegetables, mulch and compost at the Guilford College Farm

  • Guilford College (NC)

Student at event recycling station

  • Babson College (MA)

Student at zero waste station at Babson College's From Day One Fest event


Nursing students’ attitudes towards sustainability and health care

  • University of Plymouth (Devon)

Aim

To evaluate attitudes towards embedding sustainability and climate change in nursing curricula among nursing students, some of whom had participated in a sustainability and health skills session, and determine ...

  • Posted Aug. 24, 2016
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Water bottle ban a success; bottled beverage sales have plummeted

  • Washington University in St. Louis (MO)

Sales of bottled beverages at Washington University in St. Louis have plummeted 39 percent since 2009, when the university became the first in the nation to ban the sale of ...

  • Posted Aug. 19, 2016
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Campus Environmental Resource Center (CampusERC)

  • Campus Consortium for Environmental Excellence (MA)
  • Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers (APPA) (VA)
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (DC)
  • National Association of College & University Business Officers (DC)
  • Campus Safety, Health, and Environmental Management Association (IN)

The Campus Environmental Resource Center - CampusERC - is a library of resources to support campus environmental performance improvement. Developed collaboratively by NACUBO, C2E2, CSHEMA, APPA and the EPA, the primary audience ...


Environmental Compliance Assistance Guide for Colleges and Universities

  • Association of Higher Education Facilities Officers (APPA) (VA)
  • Campus Safety, Health, and Environmental Management Association (IN)

This second edition of Environmental Compliance Assistance Guide for Colleges and Universities updates the key environmental rules and regulations affecting physical surroundings of our campuses. Facilities and campus safety professional ...

  • Posted July 21, 2016
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Recycling as a result of “cultural greening”?

  • Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick Campus (NJ)
  • The College of New Jersey (NJ)

Purpose This study aims to test whether faculty and students who have developed the most pro-environmental values and concerns are also the most likely to reduce the on-campus waste stream ...

  • Posted July 18, 2016
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Recycling at Institutions of Higher Education: Causal Conditions for Disparate Performance and Opportunity for Reform

  • Texas Tech University (TX)

Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) are viewed as analogous to small cities because of similarities in organizational structure and operational procedures. The existing literature on sustainability in higher education lacks ...


Go Green at Oakton

  • Oakton Community College (IL)

Created in house by our Media Services Department, this video was developed as an introduction of sustainable initiatives at Oakton Community College to students and campus visitors. We focused on ...

  • Posted July 1, 2016
  • Videos & Webinars
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ReCycle Bikes

  • Texas A&M University-Kingsville (TX)

ReCycle Bikes is a bike rental program designed to allow students, who demonstrate a need, access to free, eco-friendly transportation in exchange for sustainability project-related volunteer hours and peer-to-peer education ...

  • Posted June 11, 2016
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UW Admissions Modernization and Paper Reduction

  • University of Washington, Seattle (WA)

After years of planning, the University of Washington’s Admissions Office switched to paperless digital admissions process for most prospective students in 2015, with plans to expand it to all ...

  • Posted June 11, 2016
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The Sustainable Office Program - SOP

  • California State University, Northridge (CA)

The Sustainable Office Program (SOP) is designed to assess department offices all over campus and categorize each office into four levels of sustainability. The four levels are Bronze, Silver, Gold ...

  • Posted June 11, 2016
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Implementing Single Stream Recycling at Bryant University

  • Bryant University (RI)

The problem is that students don’t understand what single stream recycling is, and as freshman students enter Bryant University they are taught to throw both their trash and recycling ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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RIT FoodShare

  • Rochester Institute of Technology (NY)

RIT FoodShare is an initiative on the RIT campus that has been established to address food insecurity and food waste. It is both a campus food pantry and a facebook ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Integrated educational food garden and composting

  • California State University, Northridge (CA)

Striving towards zero waste and with a close-the-loop philosophy, CSUN students are diverting over 35,000 pounds of pre-consumer waste/year and turning it back into food via an on ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Composting for a Greener Campus: the Texas State University Bobcat Blend program

  • Texas State University, San Marcos (TX)

Bobcat Blend is a faculty managed, student-run and grant-supported research and teaching-oriented waste management campus composting program at Texas State University. The goals of the organization are to teach students ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Zero Waste Game Day at Duke University

  • Duke University (NC)

Leading up to the 2014 Duke Football season, a formal partnership was created between Duke Athletics, Duke Recycling, Duke Stores, and the Duke Sustainability Office in order to successfully achieve ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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UW–Madison Receipt Reduction Project

  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (WI)

Over a span of two years, teams of students, faculty, and staff at the University of Wisconsin–Madison eliminated mandatory receipt printing at campus dining centers, restaurants, markets, and cafes ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Bagging the Disposable Plastic Bag

  • Case Western Reserve University (OH)
  • Bon Appétit Management Company

The Student Sustainability Council at Case Western Reserve University removed disposable plastic bags from campus dining locations and replaced them with reusable bags.

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Changing Norms by Changing Behavior: The Princeton Drink Local Program

  • Princeton University (NJ)

Unprecedented levels of global bottled water consumption present a major challenge for the environment and water conservation initiatives. Educational institutions are in a unique position to promote conservation behavior by ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Brown's- A California Cafe

  • University of California, Berkeley (CA)

This August, Cal Dining opened brown’s- a california café. By design, over 80% of the ingredients used are sourced locally from within 250 miles of the UC Berkeley campus ...

  • Posted June 10, 2016
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Ohio University Move-Out Sustainability Project

  • Ohio University (OH)

Each year during student Move Out week, Ohio University's Department of Recycling and Zero Waste partners with the City of Athens, Athens Hocking Recycling Center, local businesses, community non-profit ...


Recycle Your Plastics

  • American Chemistry Council (DC)

RecycleYourPlastics.org is an easy to use resource on plastics recycling for recycling professionals. The site includes resources such as user-friendly tips and tools, best practices, ready access to experts ...


Development of a Novel Food Waste Collection Kiosk and Waste-to-Energy Business Model

  • University of Toledo (OH)

The US generates more than 37 million metric tons of food waste each year and over 95% of it is disposed of at US landfills. This paper describes the development ...


Love Food, Hate Waste: Analyzing Food Waste and Reduction at Rice University

  • Rice University (TX)

It is known that about 30% of food produced worldwide is ultimately wasted (Gunders 2012). Rice University is not immune to this phenomenon, and past research has shown that Rice ...


Quantifying the components of the mass and energy balance of a black soldier fly (BSF) food waste composting system

  • Rochester Institute of Technology (NY)

Project Description:

An academic institution represents a constrained system that generates a consistent amount of waste. Bioconversion of organic food waste with Black solider fly (Hermetia illucens;Diptera: Stratiomyidae) larave ...


Unifying Campus Efforts in Pursuit of Green Restaurant Certification at UC Irvine's East Food Court

  • University of California, Irvine (CA)

UC Irvine's East Food Court became a Certified Green Restaurant on November 5, 2015 and upgraded its certification from 2-Star to 3-Star on April 22, 2016 through significant interdepartmental ...


From in-vessel campus composting to sustainable urban farming: connecting science with education and community service

  • Kean University (NJ)

Kean University runs a food scrap composting program with a custom-designed in-vessel composter capable of composting up to 1000 pounds of food scraps per day. It diverts food scraps from ...


Stash It, Don’t Trash It Move-Out Reuse Initiative

  • College of Saint Benedict (MN)

As the semester nears its end, students from all over campus pitch their unwanted items to the curb. These items range from unopened soup cans to couches and mini fridges ...


Grizz's Garage: Dorm Item Resale

  • University of Puget Sound (WA)

During Spring Move-Out, students donate their unwanted but still usable dorm items, such as shower caddies, rugs, and hangers, and then the items are re-sold to first-year students during Fall ...

This tab provides access to data collected through AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS enables meaningful comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements developed with broad participation from the campus sustainability community. Additional content and advanced benchmarking tools will be added to this tab over time.

Programs and Initiatives

The following links connect to specific Content Displays on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Scores

The following link connects to the Score Display on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Waste Partners

Pharos Systems International

Rochester, NY
Business Leader
A certified B Corp, Pharos helps universities reveal wasteful habits and hidden costs making campus printing less expensive, more mindful, and more sustainable.

Busch Systems

Barrie, ON
Business Supporter

Veritiv

Sandy Springs, GA
Business Supporter

CleanRiver Recycling Solutions

Aurora, ON
Business Affiliate
We design and manufacture containers to specifically suit your needs and then help you implement facility-wide programs that achieve your waste diversion goals and generate recycling program ROI.

Landmark Studio & Design

Muskego, WI
Business Affiliate

LRP Recycling

Framingham, MA
Business Affiliate

Max-R

Sussex, WI
Business Affiliate
Max-R is the innovator of the customized waste and recycling bin.

Post Landfill Action Network

Dover, NH
Business Affiliate
The Post-Landfill Action Network cultivates, educates, and inspires the student-led zero waste movement. We inform students about the waste crisis and equip them with the necessary skills and resources to implement solutions to waste on their campus.

RRS

Ann Arbor, MI
Business Affiliate
RRS is a sustainability and recycling consulting firm that possess core strengths in recovery, organics and collaborative action development serving both public and private sectors.

Textbooks for Change

Toronto, ON
Business Affiliate
Textbooks for Change sustainably provides educational material to those both locally and abroad.

The Campus Kitchens Project

Washington, DC
Business Affiliate
Empowering students to create innovative and sustainable solutions to food waste and hunger.