Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 53.85
Liaison Ruairi O'Mahony
Submission Date May 1, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Massachusetts Lowell
OP-22: Waste Minimization

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.44 / 5.00 Glenn MacDonald
Executive Director of Environmental & Emergency Management
Environmental & Emergency Management
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Waste generated::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 321 Tons 248 Tons
Materials composted 119 Tons 0 Tons
Materials reused, donated or re-sold 2.84 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 1,033 Tons 1,896 Tons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students 3,645 2,248
Number of residential employees 9 0
Number of in-patient hospital beds 0 0
Full-time equivalent enrollment 12,884 8,548
Full-time equivalent of employees 1,726 1,255
Full-time equivalent of distance education students 1,300 825

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, 2007 June 30, 2008

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

A brief description of any (non-food) waste audits employed by the institution:
Waste Audits are regularly conducted in some courses on campuses, professors often partner with the City of Lowell Solid Waste and Recycling Manager.

A brief description of any institutional procurement policies designed to prevent waste:
UMass Lowell's Sustainability Initiative and Design Guidelines provides recommendations for preferred building material purchasing. The guidelines promote the purchase of materials with recycled content – either postconsumer or pre‐consumer recycled content as well as materials that are manufactured “locally,” within 500 miles.

A brief description of any surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:
UMass Lowell uses surplus materials in house.

A brief description of the institution's efforts to make materials available online by default rather than printing them:
UMass Lowell has made many strides to limit printing paper. Some illustrative examples are listed: • For UMass Lowell offices there has been a large Document Imaging campaign encouraging people to digitize their paper files and store everything digitally. http://www.uml.edu/IT/DI/Intro-DI.aspx • In the academic setting, the university uses program such as Turnitin, Blackboard, Wikispaces, and clicker technology to reduce the number of paper quizzes handouts necessary. Most classes are run with limited paper because of this. http://www.uml.edu/IT/Services/Academic-Technology/default.aspx • Nearly all academic departments and research groups have shared drives and file servers to make sharing and editing files digitally seamless and secure. http://www.uml.edu/IT/News-Events/Shareit.aspx & http://www.uml.edu/IT/Services/Get-connected/File-Shares.aspx • UMass Lowell is improving software access so people can all be guaranteed to have the capacity to work digitally with the VLabs program. http://www.uml.edu/IT/Services/vLabs/default.aspx

A brief description of any limits on paper and ink consumption employed by the institution:
UMass Lowell has a UPrint policy which is a green initiative that is aimed to reduce paper waste by eliminating unwanted and excess printing. UPrint is a software solution, a package called Pharos Uniprint, which is utilized by all UMass campuses and most Massachusetts public universities. UMass Lowell's libraries also host several online databases with resources that are not in print and only available online.

A brief description of any programs employed by the institution to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:
UMass Lowell works to reduce residence hall waste by hosting fall move in/out cleanouts and providing bins to recycle or donate items.

A brief description of any other (non-food) waste minimization strategies employed by the institution:
UMass Lowell has programs in place to recycle: paper, plastic, cardboard, glass, aluminum, tin, steel, toner cartridges, lawn and yard waste, scrap metal, C&D waste, white goods, electronics & computers, batteries, vegetable oil, fluorescent lamps, waste oil, lab glass, ballasts, silver, empty metal drums & soil; also note: UMss Lowell Toxic Use Reduction Institute is expanding waste minimization beyond campus borders.

A brief description of any food waste audits employed by the institution:
During Earth Week of 2013 UMass Lowell audited post-consumer waste in it’s largest dining hall, University Dining Commons, leading up to the pilot composting program. In the three Dining Halls that currently compost pre- and post-consumer waste—Fox Hall, South Dining and Inn & Conference Center Dining Hall—their compost weights are regularly audited.

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:
Kitchen food waste, prep waste and spoilage in dining halls are composted. During the first eight months of operations, an estimated 184,000 pounds of food waste was composted. UMass Lowell also joined the Food Recovery Challenge, an initiative of the EPA that encourages businesses and institutions to reduce food waste to help preserve the environment and combat hunger. Program asks participates to increase food donations and recycling as well as find ways to reduce waste. Each member charts food waste with the goal of cutting the volume by 5% per year.

A brief description of programs and/or practices to track and reduce post-consumer food waste:
Dining halls have been trayless since 2007.

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):
Crossroads Café in University Crossing provides BPI-certified compostable containers to its customers. There is an ongoing back of house composting program ongoing, but no front of the house program currently.

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):
South Dining, University Dining Commons and Inn & Conference Center Dining all utilize reusable service-ware and run a pre and post consumer composting program.

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:
Starbucks (North and South), Einstein’s Bros. Bagels (North), Crossroads Café (University Crossing) all offer discounts to customers for using reusable mugs.

A brief description of other dining services waste minimization programs and initiatives:
Campus Dish – UMass Lowell sources many foods from local farmers, growers and distributors (Pioneer Valley Grower’s Association, Lanni Orchards, Eva’s Garden); recycle at all dining locations across campus, tray less since 2007, 100% of fryer oil is recycled and used for heating oil in homeless shelters; filtered water available at hydration stations around campus, 100% recycled paper in all dining locations, green cleaning, train employees each semester on common energy and water conservation practices. Additional information can be found at: http://umasslowell.campusdish.com/Sustainability.aspx https://umasslowell.campusdish.com/Sustainability/WhatWeAreDoing.aspx

The website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization initiatives is available:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:
UMass Lowell has a well-developed Recycling & Waste Diversion program in place. The university’s primary goal is to reduce our overall output of waste. The majority of recycling occurs through our Zero-Sort program including all mixed paper, plastic, cardboard, glass, aluminum, tin and steel. Every effort is made to find a local organization to accept our materials and we prefer to only use organizations that are R2 certified or equivalent. Collection bins with clear signage are located throughout the university and picked up regularly. UMass Lowell also participates in the “RecycleMania” program to encourage recycling efforts and reduce solid waste generation. Links to relevant policies and procedures: http://www.uml.edu/EEM/Policies-and-Procedures/default.aspx http://www.uml.edu/EEM/Environmental-Stewardship/recycling/zero-sort-recycling-program.aspx http://www.uml.edu/EEM/Environmental-Stewardship/recycling/battery-small-electronics-recycling-drop-offs.aspx http://www.uml.edu/EEM/Environmental-Stewardship/recycling/Composting.aspx http://www.uml.edu/EEM/Environmental-Stewardship/recycling/additional-recycling-programs.aspx

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.