Overall Rating Bronze - expired
Overall Score 36.75
Liaison Audrey McSain
Submission Date July 10, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Lehigh University
OP-22: Waste Minimization

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.18 / 5.00 Gary Falasca
Facilities Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Waste generated::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 422.01 Tons 333.18 Tons
Materials composted 718.98 Tons 658.29 Tons
Materials reused, donated or re-sold 14 Tons 13 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 1,168.06 Tons 1,269.32 Tons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students 4,627 4,608
Number of residential employees 0 0
Number of in-patient hospital beds 0 0
Full-time equivalent enrollment 7,931.33 7,577.33
Full-time equivalent of employees 1,790.67 1,654
Full-time equivalent of distance education students 212 234.33

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year July 1, 2013 June 30, 2014
Baseline Year July 1, 2010 June 30, 2011

A brief description of when and why the waste generation baseline was adopted:
First year of overall data

A brief description of any (non-food) waste audits employed by the institution:
The Office of Sustainability conducts 4-6 non-food waste audits annually on academic, administrative, residential and greek buildings

A brief description of any institutional procurement policies designed to prevent waste:
Lehigh worked with our office supplies vendors to minimize packaging supplies are delivered in.

A brief description of any surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:
Asa's Attic is Lehigh's Surplus Property Disposal program available to faculty and staff departments

A brief description of the institution's efforts to make materials available online by default rather than printing them:
Library and Technology Services works with Lehigh faculty to educate them about alternatives to requiring printing in their classes.

A brief description of any limits on paper and ink consumption employed by the institution:
Lehigh has instituted a printing quota for students which results in an annual paper savings of a 1 million pages per academic year. Double sided printing is default for all public sites (libraries and computer labs) printers.

A brief description of any programs employed by the institution to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:
Students who will be packing up at the end of the semester are encouraged to donate unwanted clothing, linens, electronics, school supplies, household items, furniture, and unopened food at designated locations within each residence hall or at the sorting facility on campus. Proceeds from this sale will fund Lehigh's Afterschool Homework Clubs for South Bethlehem children. In addition to benefiting this worthwhile cause, the sale also helps recycle much-needed items back into the community, at extremely affordable prices.

A brief description of any other (non-food) waste minimization strategies employed by the institution:

A brief description of any food waste audits employed by the institution:
Students conduct waste audits in dining and food retail facilities about once a semester to determine food waste for a given meal

A brief description of any programs and/or practices to track and reduce pre-consumer food waste in the form of kitchen food waste, prep waste and spoilage:
All pre-consumer food waste is diverted from the waste stream to a pulper and then buckets which are delivered to a farm where the food waste is composted.

A brief description of programs and/or practices to track and reduce post-consumer food waste:
None at this time

A brief description of the institution's provision of reusable and/or third party certified compostable to-go containers for to-go food and beverage items (in conjunction with a composting program):
Dining Services provides free reusable to-go containers for students. Student are permitted up to 2 containers per academic year for free. If not returned, students are charged a $10 fee per container.

A brief description of the institution's provision of reusable service ware for “dine in” meals and reusable and/or third party certified compostable service ware for to-go meals (in conjunction with a composting program):
Students use china and stainless steel silverware in all dining locations. No disposables are used.

A brief description of any discounts offered to customers who use reusable containers (e.g. mugs) instead of disposable or compostable containers in to-go food service operations:
Students receive a discount of they bring their reusable mugs to any dining or retail location. Incentives include $.99 refills any size, price of next smaller size or 10% off depending on location.

A brief description of other dining services waste minimization programs and initiatives:
REUSABLE DISHWARE PROGRAM: Students can now reserve Reusable Dishware for an event. The Dishware includes plates, bowls, forks, knives, and spoons. This program is free of charge for the students and contributes to Lehigh Dining goal of being sustainable.

The website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization initiatives is available:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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.