Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 72.90
Liaison Kathleen Crawford
Submission Date July 23, 2020

STARS v2.2

Florida Gulf Coast University
OP-18: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.58 / 8.00 Kathleen Crawford
Sustainability Coordinator
Environmental Health & Safety
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 525.17 Tons 835.87 Tons
Materials composted 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 72.60 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 3,816.06 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 0 Tons 2,833 Tons
Total waste generated 4,413.83 Tons 3,668.87 Tons

A brief description of the residual conversion facility:

Lee County operates an Integrated Solid Waste Management system, meaning all parts of the system function cooperatively to gather the most value from the waste stream by recycling or recovering material before final disposal.

All of the household garbage collected in Lee and Hendry counties eventually ends up at the Lee County Resource Recovery Facility, where it is sorted for reusable and recyclable materials. The lowest value waste is brought to the Waste-To-Energy Plant where, for the last 20 years, it has been converted to electricity through combustion.

Many of these functions take place at the Solid Waste Resource Recovery Facility in Buckingham. In this park-like setting in East Lee County, there are several facilities that handle different parts of the waste stream.

Recyclable materials are sorted and baled for secondary markets in the Material Recovery Facility (MRF).
Construction and Demolition Debris (C & D) is recycled to recover reusable materials such as concrete, plastics and wood.
Yard Waste (HORT) is deposited before being ground for use as mulch or compost.
Household garbage is brought to the Waste-to-Energy facility (WTE) for combustion.
A residents' drop-off area is available for convenient waste disposal.

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Period July 1, 2018 June 30, 2019
Baseline Period July 1, 2012 June 30, 2013

A brief description of when and why the waste generation baseline was adopted:

We adopted 2012-13 as our baseline year for the following reasons:
-It was the year we used in prior STARS reporting.
-It was the first year that we moved to single stream recycling.
-It was prior to fully implementing our move-out waste diversion campaign in 2013-14.

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 4,708 3,291
Number of employees resident on-site 12 9
Number of other individuals resident on-site 3 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 13,504 8,355
Full-time equivalent of employees 1,576 1,180
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 520 240
Weighted campus users 12,103 7,796.25

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.36 Tons 0.47 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 No
Animal bedding No
White goods (i.e. appliances) Yes
Electronics Yes
Laboratory equipment Yes
Furniture Yes
Residence hall move-in/move-out waste Yes
Scrap metal No
Pallets Yes
Tires Yes
Other (please specify below) No

A brief description of other materials the institution has recycled, composted, donated and/or re-sold:

See OP-20 for more information regarding FGCU's laboratory chemical and hazardous waste reduction and recycling program.

Materials intended for disposal but subsequently recovered and reused on campus, performance year:

Does the institution use single stream recycling to collect standard recyclables in common areas?:

Does the institution use dual stream recycling to collect standard recyclables in common areas?:

Does the institution use multi-stream recycling to collect standard recyclables in common areas?:

Average contamination rate for the institution’s recycling program:

A brief description of any recycling quality control mechanisms employed:

Office of Housing and Resident Life's Green Team and Resident Assistants provide educational events, signage, and videos to educate residents on what does and does not go into recycling, and the issues that contamination causes. Students also audit recycling to determine areas of concern.

A brief description of the institution's waste-related behavior change initiatives:

See above. FGCU also participates annually in Recyclemania/Campus Race to Zero Waste.

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:

A brief description of the institution's surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:

When office supplies are no longer useful but still in workable condition the Property Manager sends an an email letting all property managers know of the availability. Occasionally our Staff Advisory Council will hold an office clean-out/swap event.

A brief description of the institution's platforms to encourage peer-to-peer exchange and reuse:

When inventoried property is no longer useful but still in workable condition the Property Accountant sends an all departments email letting all property managers know of the availability. If no departments are in need of the item, the Property Survey Board determines if the item can be traded-in, cannibalized, or donated to a not-for-profit agency.

A brief description of the institution's limits on paper and ink consumption:

There is no free printing on campus. Students must use the credit stored on their campus ID card to use printing services in the Library and computer labs.

FGCU has just implemented a new operating system called Workday that has eliminated 10,000 paper leave approval slips, 24,800 purchase orders, 3,062 travel requests and 2,000 property transfer forms.

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to make materials available online by default rather than printing them:

Faculty are encouraged to use our Canvas Learning Management System to distribute and collect course materials as opposed to printing.

A brief description of the institution's program to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:

Move in:
Residential Life clearly communicates what students should and should not bring to campus, and sets up additional recycling units and move-in volunteers to ensure items than can and should be recycled do not end up in the trash or as litter.

Move out:
Residential Life partners with not-for-profits to take donations of unwanted items such as clothing, equipment, non-perishable foods, and cleaning supplies.

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

Website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization and diversion efforts is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

WastePro does not measure the weight of the recyclable materials that they pick up. Therefore, we used our Recyclemania data (which uses standard best practices as outlined by Keep America Beautiful) to estimate the amount of materials recycled. We collected data for an eight-week period during Recyclmaina and we used the average amount of waste recycled during Recyclemania to calculate our annual average. We feel justified that, if anything, these numbers are an underestimation for the following reasons:
- Only the main campus's waste is monitored during Recyclemania. The amount of waste recycled in the residence halls is not included in these numbers.
- During the summer, the campus continues to be used at full capacity for summer camps, conferences, and summer classes. (Undergraduate students entering FGCU with fewer than 60 semester hours of credit must enroll in a minimum of 9 semester credit hours of coursework during one or more summer sessions prior to graduation.

In addition to the estimated annualized amounts from RecycleMania, Secure Shred provides Campus Reservations with the amount of paper recycled from file shredding and this information was added to our RecycleMania data.

This includes university property that is donated, resold, or traded as well as move out waste diverted by the Office of Housing and Residence Life through partnerships with local non-profit organizations. It also includes dining waste that goes to a local family farm to feed livestock, as well as to an energy project ran by faculty and students.

Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion:
These data are based on the amount of waste the county charged us for removal and do not reflect real performance. We are charged for waste hauling per square foot of building space.

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.