Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 68.71
Liaison Keisha Payson
Submission Date Feb. 28, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Bowdoin College
OP-21: Hazardous Waste Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Keisha Payson
Sustainability Coordinator
Sustainable Bowdoin
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have strategies in place to safely dispose of all hazardous, special (e.g. coal ash), universal, and non-regulated chemical waste and seek to minimize the presence of these materials on campus?:
Yes

A brief description of steps taken to reduce hazardous, special (e.g. coal ash), universal, and non-regulated chemical waste:

Bowdoin has shifted to microscale science for many of its instructional labs.. The microscale concept was first developed and popularized by chemistry professors at Bowdoin College. The principle was to modify standard class-room chemistry procedures in a way that uses a fraction of the typical quantity of chemicals. The goal was to reduce the cost of chemical purchase and disposal and to minimize the risks that accompany the use, storage and disposal of chemicals. A crucial benefit of "going microscale" is a safer environment for students and instructors, including better air quality. The Bowdoin Laboratory Manager conducts a Chemical Reuse Inventory as part of Bowdoin's Waste Minimization Plan. This is supported by the chemical inventory system for the Science Center that reduces wasteful ordering by allowing employees to determine if a chemical is in stock prior to purchasing. The inventory system also allows Bowdoin to perform "clean-outs" for old and unused chemicals, continuously reducing the volume of chemicals stored on-site. Bowdoin continuously looks for product substitutions for hazardous chemicals. Improvements have been made in Housekeeping by identifying multipurpose cleaners that can eliminate several specialized cleaners. Bowdoin conducts trainings and refresher courses for employees as part of an effort to reduce hazardous, universal, and non-regulated chemical waste.


A brief description of how the institution safely disposes of hazardous, universal, and non-regulated chemical waste:

Bowdoin adheres to all State and Federal regulations pertaining to the generation, identification, storage and management for all hazardous, universal and non-regulated chemical wastes. New waste streams are characterized as they are identified and existing waste stream characterizations are updated annually to ensure the proper waste management method is used. Bowdoin contracts with licensed waste transporters for the removal of all regulated and non-regulated chemical wastes. All employees that handle or manage these waste streams are trained annually.


A brief description of any significant hazardous material release incidents during the previous three years, including volume, impact and response/remediation:

Bowdoin has not had any significant hazardous material release incidents in the last three years.


A brief description of any inventory system employed by the institution to facilitate the reuse or redistribution of laboratory chemicals:

Bowdoin utilizes an electronic chemical inventory and central chemical stock room for the Science Center. All chemicals are barcoded and uploaded into the inventory. Chemicals are "checked out" to laboratories and tracked by location. As laboratories and experiments change, chemicals are returned to the stock room and "checked in". Staff can review the stockroom inventory to determine if a chemical is in stock prior to ordering. This reduces the volume of chemical ordered and reduces the waste by encouraging the reuse of chemicals that would typically be disposed.


Does the institution have or participate in a program to responsibly recycle, reuse, and/or refurbish electronic waste generated by the institution?:
Yes

Does the institution have or participate in a program to responsibly recycle, reuse, and/or refurbish electronic waste generated by students?:
Yes

A brief description of the electronic waste recycling program(s), including information about how electronic waste generated by the institution and/or students is recycled:

E-waste is generated through routine updates and improvements in the electronics that are used in campus offices, computer labs and campus systems. Bowdoin offers collection and recycling of these materials for all members of the college. Additionally, Bowdoin Sustainability offers an annual household electronics drop off event, open to the campus community. All E-waste generated is shipped as Universal Waste with a licensed waste hauler for reuse, recycling or disposal. The Information Technology department at Bowdoin also collects unwanted but usable items and sells them or donates them to various non-profits in the area.


Is the institution’s electronic waste recycler certified under the e-Stewards and/or Responsible Recycling (R2) standards?:
Yes

Electronic waste recycled or otherwise diverted from the landfill or incinerator during the most recent year for which data is available during the previous three years:
0.42 Tons

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.