Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 66.59
Liaison Jennifer deHart
Submission Date Oct. 30, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Unity College
OP-22: Waste Minimization

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.67 / 5.00 Steve Kahl
Director of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Waste generated::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 41.20 Tons 36.30 Tons
Materials composted 10 Tons 9.60 Tons
Materials reused, donated or re-sold 0.70 Tons 0.10 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 58.70 Tons 53 Tons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students 361 353
Number of residential employees 2 2
Number of in-patient hospital beds 0 0
Full-time equivalent enrollment 571 581
Full-time equivalent of employees 129 131
Full-time equivalent of distance education students 0 0

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year Jan. 1, 2013 Dec. 31, 2013
Baseline Year Jan. 1, 2012 Dec. 31, 2012

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

The baseline year is 2012. We have gone to zero sort recycling as of Fall, 2014 so this baseline under the old system will be an important reference for expected increases in recycling due to zero sort.

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

In 2013, we conducted a competition between residence halls to maximize recycling and minimize waste during Earth Week

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

A procurement policy is in progress and is largely being implemented but has not been approved.

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

Campus community utilizes email for exchange of office furniture. The Recycling team salvages reusable office supplies including binders, notebooks, folders, and some paper for redistribution to students and employees at the beginning of each semester. An informal email program lists surplus furniture and related re-usable items.

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

The institution no longer prints out course catalogs (http://sustainabilitymonitor.wordpress.com/2009/12/03/unity-college-catalog-goes-paperless/). Course evaluations are now conducted online (http://sustainabilitymonitor.wordpress.com/2010/04/24/online-course-evals-to-reduce-paper-use/).

Course schedules, calendars, and other pertinent information is made available online.

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

IT has a program for which students are allotted a limited amount of free printing after which they have to pay for copies and printing. Departments share printers and are charged for copies and printing.

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

The recycling crew places donation bins to collect all unwanted office supplies, small appliances, clothing, food, and furniture. These items are then donated locally to Goodwill or redistributed to campus members in following semesters.

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

Cardboard is separated and taken to the local recycling center separate from zero sort waste.

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

We track food waste but have not done any '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:

We track food waste diverted to compost by tracking volume and calculating weight from volume. Some food waste goes to a compost pile and is re-used. Most of it is given to farmers to be fed to pigs in the region.

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

No trays are used in Unity College's dining facilities.

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):

The Student Center doesn't have a reusable to-go container program.

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):

Our service ware is metal and is washed and re-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:

Reusable mugs are offered at the Student Center. Students are charged $.75 for a cup of coffee in a reusable mug. If you choose to put your coffee in a paper cup you will be charged $1.00. Students are given free water bottles upon enrollment as a long-standing tradition at Unity College.

A brief description of other dining services waste minimization programs and initiatives:

Dining services has implemented some individualized entree ordering rather than having bulk entrees. For example, a new Mongolian Grill allows students to select heir mix of foods for grilling and then have it cooked to order. This approach has resulted in a reduction of food waste by an estimated 9%.

The website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization initiatives is available:

The campus implemented zero-sort recycling as of Fall, 2014, including
standardization of containers and labeling. We anticipate that these changes will result our recycling rate increasing from 40% to over 50% within a year.

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.