Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 51.50
Liaison Elaine Durr
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Elon University
OP-19: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.35 / 8.00 David Worden
Environmental Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 200.46 Tons 112.76 Tons
Materials composted 311.74 Tons 90 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 6.50 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 1,289.91 Tons 1,079.49 Tons
Total waste generated 1,808.61 Tons 1,282.25 Tons

A brief description of the residual conversion facility, including affirmation that materials are sorted prior to conversion to recover recyclables and compostable materials:

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year June 1, 2016 May 31, 2017
Baseline Year June 1, 2004 May 31, 2005

A brief description of when and why the waste generation baseline was adopted (e.g. in sustainability plans and policies or in the context of other reporting obligations):

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 3,645 2,514
Number of employees resident on-site 17 15
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 19 9
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 6,610 4,668
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 1,387 825
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 0 0
Weighted campus users 6,932.25 4,761

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.26 Tons 0.27 Tons

Percentage reduction in total waste generated per weighted campus user from baseline:

Percentage of materials diverted from the landfill or incinerator by recycling, composting, donating or re-selling, performance year:

Percentage of materials diverted from the landfill or incinerator (including up to 10 percent attributable to post-recycling residual conversion):

In the waste figures reported above, has the institution recycled, composted, donated and/or re-sold the following materials?:
Yes or No
Paper, plastics, glass, metals, and other recyclable containers Yes
Food Yes
Cooking oil Yes
Plant materials Yes
Animal bedding No
White goods (i.e. appliances) No
Laboratory equipment No
Furniture No
Residence hall move-in/move-out waste Yes
Scrap metal No
Pallets No
Tires No
Other (please specify below) No

A brief description of other materials the institution has recycled, composted, donated and/or re-sold:
Elon University recycles the following items but does not have weights for them: white goods, furniture, scrap metal, pallets, tires, batteries, printer cartridges. Electronics recycling is addressed in OP-21.

Materials intended for disposal but subsequently recovered and reused on campus, performance year (e.g. materials that are actively diverted from the landfill or incinerator and refurbished/repurposed) :

Does the institution use single stream recycling (a single container for commingled recyclables) to collect standard recyclables (i.e. paper, plastic, glass, metals) in common areas?:

Does the institution use dual stream (two separate containers for recyclables, e.g. one for paper and another for plastic, glass, and metals) to collect standard recyclables (i.e. paper, plastic, glass, metals) in common areas?:

Does the institution use multi-stream recycling (multiple containers that further separate different types of materials) to collect standard recyclables (i.e. paper, plastic, glass, metals) in common areas?:

Average contamination rate for the institution’s recycling program (percentage, 0-100):

A brief description of any recycling quality control mechanisms employed, e.g. efforts to minimize contamination and/or monitor the discard rates of the materials recovery facilities and mills to which materials are diverted:

A brief description of the institution's waste-related behavior change initiatives, e.g. initiatives to shift individual attitudes and practices such as signage and competitions:
In spring 2016, the university shifted to single stream recycling. At that time, compost collection was introduced to more areas on campus and now includes the student center, some residential neighborhoods, athletic venues, the library and event locations throughout campus. Collection bins and signs are all color coded: black bags and signs for landfill items; clear bags, blue lids and blue signs for recyclables and orange bags, lids and signs for compostables. The spring Phoenix Cup competition focuses on landfill waste reduction. Students and faculty/staff earn points and prizes for participating in behaviors that reduce landfill waste or are educational around the topic of landfill waste reduction. After a student initiated pilot was done in 2015-16, in the fall of 2016 all residence hall rooms were provided with an in-room recycling bin (which included signage) to encourage and facilitate recycling in residence halls.

A brief description of the institution's waste audits and other initiatives to assess its materials management efforts and identify areas for improvement:

A brief description of the institution's procurement policies designed to prevent waste (e.g. by minimizing packaging and purchasing in bulk):

A brief description of the institution's surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:
While there is not a surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program, excess and/or unwanted office supplies are reused on campus through an informal system. Any furniture that is appropriate for reuse is reused on campus.

A brief description of the institution's platforms to encourage peer-to-peer exchange and reuse (e.g. of electronics, furnishings, books and other goods):

A brief description of the institution's limits on paper and ink consumption (e.g. restricting free printing and/or mandating doubled-sided printing in libraries and computer labs):
Elon has a print management system, which reduced printing in computer labs and the library by 70% in the first full year of implementation on the Elon campus. Students who want to print must go to a release station and swipe their Phoenix Card (student ID card) before the submitted document will print. Students are allotted about 500 sheets per semester though it is rare for a student to use all of his or her allotment. There is a per page charge for anything over the allotment. In addition, duplex is the default on all computer lab and library printers. The School of Law campus in Greensboro utilizes the print management system with a higher allotment.

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to make materials (e.g. course catalogs, course schedules, and directories) available online by default rather than printing them:
Course catalogues and course schedules are available online. They are not routinely printed. The faculty and staff directory is only printed for those who request a printed copy.

A brief description of the institution's program to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:
The Office of Sustainability, the Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement, Residence Life, Goodwill and Habitat for Humanity, along with other on- and off-campus partners, collaborate to organize 'Don't Trash It!' at the end of the school year. This effort is targeted to both on- and off-campus students and seeks non-perishable food items, clothing, household goods, electronics, bedding and furniture in good condition. Items are collected and donated to several non-profit organizations. 'Don't Trash It!' runs for two weeks during final exams and through graduation. Donations are taken to a series of drop-off points throughout campus. There is at least one collection site in every residential neighborhood. Donations are then collected and taken to central locations where community partners pick them up. In 2016-2017, about 6.5 tons of donations were collected (not including furniture) and given to a variety of non-profit partners. During move-in, the primary targeted waste stream is cardboard and diverting it to recycling. This is done through signage, in-person communication, environmental services staff and additional collection bins.

A brief description of the institution's programs or initiatives to recover and reuse other materials intended for disposal:

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:
Historically, Elon University did not receive weight information for all of the landfill containers located on campus. This information started to be available toward the end of 2016-2017. This new data was used to estimate the weight of these containers for months when this data was not available. The weight of materials composted for 2004-05 represents yard waste composting. The weight of materials composted for the performance year (FY 2016-2017) includes food composting and yard waste composting. The weight of materials recycled for 2016-2017 includes cooking oil; while the weight of materials recycled for 2004-2005 does not include cooking oil.

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 or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.