Overall Rating Platinum - expired
Overall Score 85.72
Liaison Kira Stoll
Submission Date March 4, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of California, Berkeley
OP-18: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 5.29 / 8.00 Mikayla Tran
SDG & OS Engagement Fellow
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 1,697.66 Tons 2,374 Tons
Materials composted 2,152.53 Tons 783 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 99.69 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 3,542.33 Tons 6,385 Tons
Total waste generated 7,492.21 Tons 9,542 Tons

A brief description of the residual conversion facility:

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Period Jan. 1, 2019 Dec. 31, 2019
Baseline Period July 1, 2000 June 30, 2001

A brief description of when and why the waste generation baseline was adopted:
The baseline year was set for the year when both waste and residential student data became available.

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 10,264 6,349
Number of employees resident on-site 0 0
Number of other individuals resident on-site 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 41,775 32,128
Full-time equivalent of employees 15,347 14,371
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 0 0
Weighted campus users 45,407.50 36,461.50

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.16 Tons 0.26 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 Yes
Animal bedding Yes
White goods (i.e. appliances) Yes
Electronics Yes
Laboratory equipment Yes
Furniture Yes
Residence hall move-in/move-out waste Yes
Scrap metal Yes
Pallets Yes
Tires Yes
Other (please specify below) Yes

A brief description of other materials the institution has recycled, composted, donated and/or re-sold:
UC Berkeley widely reuses and donates classroom and office furniture.

In 2019, Housing & Dining Sustainability Advocates helped donate 10,831 lbs of food, clothing, shoes, accessories, linen, towels, comforters, and more to the Alameda County Food Bank, ReUse, Local Animal Shelters, Goodwill, and Savers.

Other highlights from Housing and Dining Sustainability Advocates:
- 7,940 dorm mattresses have been recycled since 2010
- 50% of the residential rooms’ furniture is green certified & contains recycled content. The solid wood material removed each year is used in the following year’s furniture order.
- 9,660 pounds of carpet, 520 foam mattresses, and 730 coil spring mattresses were recycled in 2019
- ~10,000 pounds of clothing, shoes, accessories and linen are donated annually through the Move Out donation drive

The campus also participates in the annual Pac-12 Team Green Zero Waste competition for both football and basketball season. Concessions’ efforts allowed athletics to be the winner of the Pac 12 “Road to Zero Waste” Basketball Competition five years in a row.

*Note: Recycling for electronics is accounted for in OP-20: Hazardous Waste Management

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:
By using multi-stream methods, the campus aims to reduce contamination of the waste stream.

A brief description of the institution's waste-related behavior change initiatives:
Our campus zero waste initiative has extensive stakeholder engagement through the official Zero Waste Working Group and the recently formed Single-Use Plastic Elimination Working Group. The Zero Waste Working Group includes Representatives from zero waste partners and different campus areas and departments (students, faculty, staff), including representatives from buildings that have implemented the zero waste building program. This group meets twice yearly to share and review campus zero waste efforts and needs. The Single-Use Plastic Elimination Working Group is made up of diverse stakeholders, helping develop enabling strategies in purchasing contracts and developing a roadmap to the 2030 target.

Zero Waste Coalition
The Zero Waste Coalition aims to bring together waste-related organizations at UC Berkeley to improve communication between them, collaborate on initiatives, be a resource for zero waste on campus, and foster a zero waste community.

Zero Waste Research Center
The Zero Waste Research Center (ZWRC) researches and implements upstream strategies for reducing campus waste, with a focus on purchasing, redesigning products, creating behavior change incentives, and instituting closed-loop circular economy waste systems.

Environmentally Preferred Products
Since 2013, Cal Zero Waste in partnership with Strategic Sourcing has hosted Environmentally Preferred Products (EPP) roadshow events to showcase and promote environmentally preferred alternatives. Environmentally Preferred Products (EPP) include refill products that produce less waste, are made
from recycled content, promote reuse over disposal, or are part of an existing take back program. The roadshow began as a means to highlight alternatives for lab products and has evolved to include office supplies as well. Attendees are introduced to the concept of EPP and are taught how to identify these items on the campus purchasing system, BearBuy.

Moving forward, the goal is to create a section in the campus bookstores that highlights and promotes environmentally preferred products so that students, staff and faculty can more easily access them, as well as continue to work with the campus procurement team to develop an easy process in BearBuy for campus staff and faculty to purchase, by default, environmentally preferred products.

Refreshing Refills
The Refreshing Refills campaign promotes waste reduction and reuse and is in many ways related to EPP. The focus of this campaign is increasing the use and purchasing of refillable and reusable items while reducing the overall volume of single-use disposables on campus.

Reuse This
In order to help promote the use of reusable items on campus, Cal Dining recently launched a pilot program called “Reuse This.” As part of this program, Cal Dining has begun to sell “Reuse This” zero waste kits at select locations on campus.

A brief description of the institution's waste audits and other initiatives to assess its materials management efforts and identify areas for improvement:
The campus Waste Audit Team perform waste audits for different buildings on campus. The team conducts multiple daylong audits to get a full assessment of a building's waste stream to better address ways the building can improve its waste sorting and decrease the amount of waste produced. The team goes to the building, collects the landfill waste and sorts through the material. The waste is sorted into six categories: landfill, mixed paper, cardboard, compost, metal and glass, recyclable plastics and non-recyclable plastics.

A brief description of the institution's procurement policies designed to prevent waste:
Single-Use Plastic Elimination Policy
In April 2020, UC Berkeley committed to the strongest plastic ban in the country. This comprehensive target will eliminate all non-essential single-use plastic with viable alternatives by 2030. Unlike other plastic bans, UC Berkeley’s initiative goes beyond previously existing plastic reduction targets focused on foodware and plastic bags, and addresses the spectrum of products and packaging used in campus academics, research, administration, and events. Items that are commonly not a part of plastic policies, such as chip bags and foam packaging, are included in this commitment, so this will push for upstream solutions and continue UC Berkeley’s leadership in sustainability.
Policy language: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1rQ1b44LSIgHolMzRDpqSRMWVGnFZkg1M/view

Additionally, Cal Zero Waste and our Green Labs works with our procurement department on identifying and buying more products that prevent waste.

Per University of California – Policy on Sustainable Practices, the University prioritizes waste reduction in the following order: reduce, reuse, and then recycle. Accordingly, sustainable procurement will look to reduce unnecessary purchasing first, then prioritize the purchase of surplus or multiple-use products, before looking at recyclable or compostable products.

Cal Zero Waste is actively working with Strategic Sourcing (procurement and purchasing) to increase sustainable procurement for zero waste products as well as make the products available to campus departments. Strategic Sourcing play a key role in developing relationships with companies and vendors, including caterers able to provide environmentally preferred products and services to campus.

A brief description of the institution's surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:
ReUSE focuses on pulling reusable items (e.g. stationary, binders, books, and clothes) out of the waste stream and recirculating them both on-campus and within the Berkeley community. To achieve this goal, ReUSE has a number of projects, including ReUSE Stations, move-outs, Refills Not Landfills and the Eco Bike. The campus also has a ReUSE Store located in the Associated
Students of the University of California (ASUC) Student Union, Martin Luther King Jr. Building. The practice of repair is also a key component to the practice of reuse as it focuses on fixing items to make them usable again. The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) recently funded the creation of the Repair Clinic, which is housed within the ReUSE Store. Through this clinic, the campus community can drop off clothing that needs light mending and have it fixed at no cost.

A brief description of the institution's platforms to encourage peer-to-peer exchange and reuse:
The UC Berkeley campus has several ongoing programs and projects focused on reuse and repair. Cal Zero Waste currently manages a reuse station in Barrows Hall that is restocked on a weekly basis with office supplies collected from office/departmental cleanouts and move outs on campus. With the collaborative help of ReUSE store volunteers as well as the structure and building access provided by the Zero Waste Buildings Program, the goal is to implement more ReUSE stations throughout all areas of campus.

The campus also has a ReUSE Store located in the Associated Students of the University of California (ASUC) Student Union, Martin Luther King Jr. Building. This store is run by the ReUSE Club and student volunteers and is a not-for-profit thrift store that offers a variety of donated items (textbooks, readers, office supplies, and clothes) at little to no cost, making it accessible and affordable to the majority of people on campus.

The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) recently funded the creation of the Repair Clinic, which is housed within the ReUSE Store. Through this clinic, the campus community can drop off clothing that needs light mending and have it fixed at no cost. Looking forward, the Repair Clinic can expand its focus from clothing to other types of items that need fixing, for example electronics.

A brief description of the institution's limits on paper and ink consumption:
The UCB Office of Sustainability offers a Staff Sustainability Certification to recognize campus departments who excel in their efforts to curb negative environmental impacts arising from: energy, waste, transportation and purchasing. The program identifies actions that departments can take, with certification contingent on documenting all 4 of the required pre-requisite criteria and a specified number of the total optional criteria.

Actions to become green-certified include:
□ Department has set double-sided printing as the default for each public printer
□ Department has a scanner available to all employees to minimize the need for printing and has a program in place to train employees on how to use it
□ Department has a one-side clean paper bin near each public printer and/or copier

There are now 30 certified departments, representing over 4,400 employees. This means that 27% of staff and faculty are part of a department that has been recognized as green.

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to make materials available online by default rather than printing them:
UC Berkeley has stopped printing course catalogs, schedules and other similar materials. Similarly, the campus minimizes printed materials at student orientation and other annual events.

A brief description of the institution's program to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:
In 2018, student leaders have launched several new initiatives in support of a more sustainable Cal Move Out that compliment the annual collaboration between the campus and the city to reduce the impacts of illegal dumping at the end of the spring semester. Student-led programs include: students canvassing the south and north side of campus to educate student residents about Move Out resources and potential fines for illegal dumping, distributing 200 flyers in a door-to-door effort; new recycling and reuse efforts in the residence halls and in the Cal Greek community; Cooperative Reuse, a Berkeley Student Cooperative program that helps Cal students recycle gently-used mattresses, furniture, electronics, bikes and other reusables; and a new application called Boxletstorage. With the support of a Haas Startup Seed Grant, a group of undergraduates recently launched Boxletstorage (http://www.boxletstorage.com/), a peer-to-peer storage app to match folks with extra items they need to store, with students who have extra space in their homes.

According to the Housing and Dining Sustainability Advocates (HADSA), about 10,000 pounds of clothing, shoes, accessories and linen are donated annually through the Move Out donation drive.

The ReUSE Program holds a Move-Out Reader and Clothing Collection in the residence halls every May. ReUSE places a canvas cart for clothing and a tall plastic toter bin for readers on the ground floor of every building with signs and labels directing residents to donate their gently-used materials in the appropriate receptacles. Students are also encouraged to post their larger items on the campus online materials exchange (exchange.berkeley.edu) to give away to others in the campus community for free rather than throwing reusable materials away. Over the summer, ReUSE student volunteers help organize collected clothes and readers to distribute back to the campus community at the beginning of each semester.

Resources for a sustainable move-out and move-in, compiled by the Office of the Chancellor: https://chancellor.berkeley.edu/gcr/local-community/programs-initiatives/move-in-move-out

A brief description of the institution's programs or initiatives to recover and reuse other materials intended for disposal:
The Refreshing Refills campaign promotes waste reduction and reuse and is in many ways related to EPP. The focus of this campaign is increasing the use and purchasing of refillable and reusable items while reducing the overall volume of single-use disposables on campus. The Refreshing Refills team recently partnered with Cal Dining and is currently helping them with the strategic distribution of thousands of reusable “Chews to Reuse” coffee mugs into the hands of customers at the Cal Dining operated retail locations on campus.

The campus has a student-run Zero Waste Research Center that targets upstream materials and aims to find alternatives for these items. The campus also participates in the plastic disclosure project.

The goal of the EPP Road Show is to promote environmentally preferred alternatives to common office supplies. The Zero Waste Research Center chose products that produce less waste than their counterparts or are made out of recycled content. For example, Pilot’s B2P (Bottle to Pen) is a pen made out of recycled plastic water bottles, which means it is a #1 PET plastic and is readily recyclable. Also, it is refillable which allows for the continual use of the pen while only throwing away the empty ink.

Mail Services and others work with vendors such as Ecological Mail and Intra Mail network to reduce unwanted mail.

Website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization and diversion efforts is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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.