Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 73.23
Liaison Michael Chapman
Submission Date Dec. 8, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Nova Scotia Community College
OP-22: Waste Minimization

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 5.00 / 5.00 Martha MacGowan
Project Assistant- Sustainability
Facilities & Engineering
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Waste generated::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 85.78 Tons 252.90 Tons
Materials composted 122.60 Tons 162 Tons
Materials reused, donated or re-sold 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 72.60 Tons 302.30 Tons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students 200 180
Number of residential employees 0 0
Number of in-patient hospital beds 0 0
Full-time equivalent enrollment 10,420 10,215
Full-time equivalent of employees 1,713 1,619
Full-time equivalent of distance education students 317 70

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year Sept. 8, 2015 Sept. 8, 2016
Baseline Year Sept. 7, 2011 Sept. 7, 2012

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

During the 2011/ 2012 academic school year it was decided that a college wide waste audit should be conducted to begin the process of monitoring our waste management practices. This is the first year we have a solid baseline for data at all 13 NSCC campuses.


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

Waste audits are conducted every semester at every NSCC campus across the province of Nova Scotia. The sort and weigh method is used and a projection formula is used on the quantity of waste to determine annual amounts of each category.

Waste is weighed in each category as the campus would sort it and to determine the campus' diversion rate (what percentage of total waste is being diverted from the landfill). Then it is sorted and weighed again to determine if each category is properly sorted. Organics is a category that is studied but is kept separately from landfill waste and recyclable material.


A brief description of any institutional procurement policies designed to prevent waste:

In the NSCC procurement policy (quoted below) it is noted under sustainable procurement to consider waste impact when purchasing products.
3.1.7 Sustainable Procurement
Sustainable Procurement involves taking a holistic approach to obtain best value for goods and services. NSCC, where economically viable and operationally feasible, shall ensure that sustainable procurement criteria are embedded in all purchasing decisions. Sustainable criteria may include, but are not limited to:
Environmental Considerations: Greenhouse gas impact, waste impact, recycled content, re-usability/ end-of-life disposal requirements.


A brief description of any surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:

The Nova Scotia Community College is committed to ensuring stewardship in the management and use of its resources. It is College policy that all assets of the College are properly recorded, tracked, used, and safeguarded. The Director of Facilities is responsible for the execution of this policy. Any assets that have become surplus are offered to other NSCC campuses, schools, or provincial departments. Items that remain unused by any of these departments are sold through public notice.


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

Although course catalogs are printed, potential students are encourged to visit www.nscc.ca to view course information as it is more accurate than the printed catalogues. Course schedules and directories are available exclusively online through "MyNSCC" on the www.nscc.ca website.


A brief description of any limits on paper and ink consumption employed by the institution:

Each student has been allocated printing credits to the equivalent of $50 for the school year. These credits are provided to cover printing errors, such as ruined prints due to low toner conditions, prints lost because of power outages, etc. No further credits will be allocated free of charge. Printing credits can be accessed from the Campus computer lab, or any computer workstation in the Library. Credits will be deducted based on:

• 10 cents / page for black and white laser output prints;
• 50 cents / page for color laser output prints;
• Costs of plots will be based on plotted area.

If a student uses all their printing credits it is possible to purchase additional credits from the Campus Business Office [or Campus Bookstore], during regular office hours. A minimum purchase of $5 is required.


A brief description of any programs employed by the institution to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:

The NSCC campus in Truro is the only NSCC campus with dormitories. At our Truro campus we have a seven-tiered waste disposal system and that is implemented in the dormitories. When students are moving out they have all of the available waste disposal facilities available to them.
The Compost, recyclables, metal and cardboard are all taken away on a weekly basis making it more convenient for the students to properly dispose of their waste.


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

The Nova Scotia Community College follows the "Pack it in, Pack it out" program where now waste bins of any kind are present in offices and classrooms. This encourages the use of the sorting stations in the hallways of the buildings as well as prevents the use of waste bins as "catch-alls". It increases the sorting accuracy as well as helps reduce the amount of waste being brought into the classrooms.

The college also teams up with local waste education officers in the different municipalities and conducts regular education efforts at the different campuses across the provinces. For example, our Burridge Campus has started a program called "Waste 101" where the local Waste Check education representative does a class on waste minimization and sorting for the students.


A brief description of any food waste audits employed by the institution:

The food waste audit is combined with the general waste audits.


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:
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A brief description of programs and/or practices to track and reduce post-consumer food waste:

Many campuses have removed trays from their cafeterias. The removal of trays supports behavioral changes to reduce overloading of trays and generation of excessive dirty dishes.


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):

Many NSCC campuses use compostable plates, napkins and to-go containers in the cafeterias. This is a standard practice with the various caterers at each campus. These containers are made of a compostable cardboard material.


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):

Many of the NSCC campuses use usable dishware and cutlery and if the customer is getting their meals to-go they will be provided with a compostable container.

The reusable dishware is left for the kitchen staff to properly clean into the compost waste stream.


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:

As NSCC has multiple campuses all over Nova Scotia, different campus offer different discounts for reusable mugs. Our Akerley, Marconi, Pictou, Truro and Waterfront campuses offer a 10- 20¢ discount for using a reusable mug.
At our Shelburne campus, reusable mugs are provided and the customer can return them after use. This reduces the amount of disposable coffee cups being used.


A brief description of other dining services waste minimization programs and initiatives:
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The website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization initiatives is available:
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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 or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.