Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 73.13
Liaison Bridget Flynn
Submission Date March 9, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Oberlin College
OP-23: Waste Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.44 / 3.00 Bridget Flynn
Sustainability Coordinator
Office of Environmental Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Materials diverted from the solid waste landfill or incinerator:
267.69 Tons

Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator :
1565 Tons

A brief description of programs, policies, infrastructure investments, outreach efforts, and/or other factors that contributed to the diversion rate, including efforts made during the previous three years:

Segregated office paper pick-up for recycling. Segregated corrugated pick-up for recycling. Single-stream collection for paper, glass, plastics #1 through #7, cans and cartons in residence halls and staff/faculty offices for collection by City recycling. Dining hall food collection for composting. Waste oil from Dining Operations is converted to Bio-diesel. Some in-dorm composting initiated in 2011. Move-out sale (unwanted/used items) for community held at end of year. Unwanted electronics collected for recycling by IT Department. Student groups (Resource Conservation Team & Campus Dining Service Recyclers) dedicated to increasing composting and recyclable collection on campus.


A brief description of any food donation programs employed by the institution:

Campus Dining Services is looking to donate leftover food via a Food Rescue Program. A student will take leftover food and bike it to local community centers.

On the other hand, they have been successful in donating surplus food. Donations occur at the start of all major breaks in the academic calendar. We donate this surplus to: http://secondharvestfoodbank.org.

Fruit produced at the Adam Joseph Lewis Center is often donated to food pantries and other local events.


A brief description of any pre-consumer food waste composting program employed by the institution:

Campus Dining Service collects pre-consumer food waste for composting in various locations. They installed a compost pulper to facilitate increased volumes of composting in Stevenson, the largest dining facility on campus.


A brief description of any post-consumer food waste composting program employed by the institution:

At the largest campus dining facility students scrape off their post-consumer food waste (in a clear bin so that they have to face their leftovers). CDS also installed a compost pulper pulp to facilitate composting this material.The OSCA dining co-ops also send pre-and-post consumer organics to be composted. New locations have been added in 2014-2015, including DeCafe, the most popular cafe on campus.


Does the institution include the following materials in its waste diversion efforts?:
Yes or No
Paper, plastics, glass, metals, and other recyclable containers Yes
Food donations Yes
Food for animals No
Food composting Yes
Cooking oil Yes
Plant materials composting Yes
Animal bedding composting No
Batteries Yes
Light bulbs Yes
Toner/ink-jet cartridges Yes
White goods (i.e. appliances) No
Laboratory equipment ---
Furniture Yes
Residence hall move-in/move-out waste Yes
Scrap metal Yes
Pallets No
Motor oil Yes
Tires Yes

Other materials that the institution includes in its waste diversion efforts:

The Recycled Products Co-op (RPC) and the Resource Conservation Team (RCT) make notebooks out of scrap paper and reduce and reuse as many materials on campus as possible!


In 2014, the City of Oberlin's city service complex housing all the refuse and recycling trucks caught fire and all the trucks were destroyed. For the almost the entirety of 2014, the College did not have a reliable way to get the majority of our recyclables to the recycling center since the City hauls college recyclables. It should be noted that recycling numbers will be very poor for this time period. The City acquired new refuse and recycling trucks by December 2014. The recycling trucks are hybrid hydraulic which will make waste management operations much more green. The College recycling program is expected to resume by February 2015. We anticipate the first few months of 2015 will show some adjustment to the new system. Beyond that time, we think the new system for recycling (the trucks, carts, and single stream) will improve recycling numbers.

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.