Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 53.27
Liaison Prabhakar Shrestha
Submission Date Feb. 20, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Nebraska - Lincoln
OP-19: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.34 / 8.00 Rich Wahl
Construction Manager
Facilities Managment & Planning
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 1,918 Tons 1,323 Tons
Materials composted 3.32 Tons 0 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 1,765 Tons 1,479 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 2,683 Tons 2,984 Tons
Total waste generated 6,369.32 Tons 5,786 Tons

A brief description of the residual conversion facility, including affirmation that materials are sorted prior to conversion to recover recyclables and compostable materials:

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year Jan. 1, 2016 Dec. 31, 2016
Baseline Year Jan. 1, 2009 Dec. 31, 2009

A brief description of when and why the waste generation baseline was adopted (e.g. in sustainability plans and policies or in the context of other reporting obligations):


Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 8,604 8,034
Number of employees resident on-site 0 0
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 23,340 20,054
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 5,422.01 3,372
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 1,384 746
Weighted campus users 22,684.51 19,018.50

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.28 Tons 0.30 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 No
White goods (i.e. appliances) Yes
Laboratory equipment No
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:

The University has also recycled, composted, donated, and/or re-sold Cartridges, Light Bulbs, Mercury Items, Oil filters, Antifreeze, Batteries, and Motor Oil.

Materials intended for disposal but subsequently recovered and reused on campus, performance year (e.g. materials that are actively diverted from the landfill or incinerator and refurbished/repurposed) :

Does the institution use single stream recycling (a single container for commingled recyclables) to collect standard recyclables (i.e. paper, plastic, glass, metals) in common areas?:

Does the institution use dual stream (two separate containers for recyclables, e.g. one for paper and another for plastic, glass, and metals) to collect standard recyclables (i.e. paper, plastic, glass, metals) in common areas?:

Does the institution use multi-stream recycling (multiple containers that further separate different types of materials) to collect standard recyclables (i.e. paper, plastic, glass, metals) in common areas?:

Average contamination rate for the institution’s recycling program (percentage, 0-100):

A brief description of any recycling quality control mechanisms employed, e.g. efforts to minimize contamination and/or monitor the discard rates of the materials recovery facilities and mills to which materials are diverted:

A brief description of the institution's waste-related behavior change initiatives, e.g. initiatives to shift individual attitudes and practices such as signage and competitions:

In 2016 the University participated in RecycleMania in an effort to use the competition as a behavior change catalyst to increase recycling.

A brief description of the institution's waste audits and other initiatives to assess its materials management efforts and identify areas for improvement:

ESC waste audits

A brief description of the institution's procurement policies designed to prevent waste (e.g. by minimizing packaging and purchasing in bulk):

UNL Procurement Services pursues the promotion, development and procurement of environmentally preferred goods and services whenever possible. Procurement Services will work with departments, employees, contractors and vendors alike to seek out and provide resources and information that will enable our customers to make informed purchasing decisions, while promoting environmental stewardship.

UNL Procurement Services is committed to buying more environmentally preferable goods and services as long as they meet our performance needs and they are available within a reasonable period of time at a reasonable cost. By including environmental considerations in our procurement decisions, along with our traditional concerns with price, performance and availability, we will remain fiscally responsible while promoting products and services that have a reduced effect on human health and the environment.

UNL’s “Green Purchasing” strategy is to develop policies consistent with the following:

1. Minimize the consumption of natural resources by reviewing current and proposed future usage and evaluating the pros and cons of alternatives.
2. Seek alternatives to products and processes that are detrimental to the environment by using more “environmentally friendly” products and processes.
3. Minimize waste, including any packaging, waste produced by the product (or service) in questions, and waste generated by the eventual disposal of the product.
4. Maximize the reuse and recycling of materials.
Stimulate demand for “environmentally friendly” products by letting manufacturers and suppliers know the environmental performance we are looking for in products.

A brief description of the institution's surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:

UNL Inventory Department disposes property by transferring it to a different department or institution, trading it in, through public sales, or by salvaging it. More information about UNL Inventory can be found at: http://inventory.unl.edu/

Auction information can be found at: http://inventory.unl.edu/public-auctions/

A brief description of the institution's platforms to encourage peer-to-peer exchange and reuse (e.g. of electronics, furnishings, books and other goods):

A brief description of the institution's limits on paper and ink consumption (e.g. restricting free printing and/or mandating doubled-sided printing in libraries and computer labs):

UNL encourages all copiers to be set to make double-sided copies as the default if they have the capacity.

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to make materials (e.g. course catalogs, course schedules, and directories) available online by default rather than printing them:

A brief description of the institution's program to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:

During the move-in period, UNL Recycling sets up additional cardboard recycling stations throughout the residence halls. University RA's also monitor the waste flow into dumpsters for recyclable material.

UNL also provides extra donation and recycling containers for students during the move-out periods. They partner with organizations such as Goodwill to make sure materials are recovered and put back to good use.

A brief description of the institution's programs or initiatives to recover and reuse other materials intended for disposal:

UNL has a program in place to recycle, reuse, and/or refurbish all unwanted electronic and computer equipment. All electronic items are first offered for redistribution through the UNL Inventory Department. Those items that are not redistributed are then offered at public auction. Items that are not sold at public auction are sent for refurbishment via Apple's Recycling program.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support 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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.