Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 45.68
Liaison Tara Pike
Submission Date Dec. 18, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Nevada Las Vegas
OP-22: Waste Minimization

Status Score Responsible Party
-- 0.00 / 5.00 Tara Pike
Solid Waste and Recycling Manager
Rebel Recycling Program/FMA
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Waste generated::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 571.90 Tons 569.20 Tons
Materials composted 207.50 Tons 107.60 Tons
Materials reused, donated or re-sold --- ---
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator --- 451 Tons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students --- ---
Number of residential employees --- ---
Number of in-patient hospital beds --- ---
Full-time equivalent enrollment --- ---
Full-time equivalent of employees --- ---
Full-time equivalent of distance education students --- ---

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, 2010 Jan. 1, 2010

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

We decided to use the numbers reported to STARS on June 17, 2011 as the baseline year; therefore, the baseline year is 2010. We did a waste audit in the proceeding years that allowed us to accurately estimate the tonnage of waste disposed of by the university.

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

We have not done any waste audits in 2013.

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

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

Any extra office supplies that UNLV staff would like to re-distrubute throughout campus can be brought to the Surplus Warehouse during our campus sales on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month. Surplus will store them and these supplies are available for faculty and staff.

The UNLV Rebel Recycling Program saves office supplies and distributes them to the campus. They have a list of offices and individuals that want and appreciate gently used office supplies. They also donate used office supplies to the Clark County School District's Teacher Exchange Program which is a warehouse program that can be accessed by K - 12 teachers.

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

Course catalogs, course schedules, registration guides and directories are all only available on line. All our work-a-day type things are online only. All UNLV's Human Resource forms are on-line. Purchasing uses a MUNIS System and many places on campus have interactive PDFs including our copy and printing center. Printed stock forms have greatly decreased with the exception of items that have visuals or pictures, and it is rare to see these types of forms.

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

Printing is not free on-campus. It is 3 cents per page for black/white and 40 cents per page for color in the Library and all computer labs.

Campus departments can not proliferate computer printers and the copier fleet is under centralized management so they can not proliferate copiers. The copiers and printers are shared by work groups. Fleet copiers are generally set for two-sided copies

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

UNLV Rebel Recycling Program has been operating a Move Out program since 1996 and a Move In Program since 1997. Move In involves placing multiple cardboard collection dumpsters next to every roll off and three cubic yard garbage dumpsters at the UNLV Residence Halls. Flyers are put up on the floors and residents are told abut the cardboard recycling at move-in.

Move Out starts three weeks before residents are expected to be moved out of the halls. Wardrobe style boxes are placed in each lobby for the first week and then boxes are placed on every floor. RAs are informed about the program and are asked to spread the word about the program. Boxes are also placed in lobbies of all the buildings between Thanksgiving and the end of the Fall semester to accommodate any students moving out over winter break.

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

UNLV has over 50 hydration stations on campus to target the reduction of single use plastic water bottles. The goal is to have a unit on every floor of every building to reduce individual plastic water bottle use and the purchase of 5-gallon jugs with the accompanying paper or plastic cups. The Take Back the Tap students hold trade in events where in students hand in ten single use plastic bottles to receive one refillable stainless steel bottle.

Water Monsters are used at big events like Festival of Communities and Premier to reduce the use of bottled water. And the Green Event Certification Program has a number of waste reduction components to it besides bottled water reduction, including reducing the use of promotional flyers, plates and silverware, and other items.

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

UNLV has not done any audits targeted at sorting the trash from food facilities on campus. UNLV Dining/Aramark tracks pre-consumer food waste and UNLV Rebel Recycling weighs all the food waste (pre- and post-consumer food waste) sent to composting and/or the pig farm. But we have never sorted the trash at the dining facilities to see if they are not diverting some materials.

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:

UNLV Dining operated by ARAMARK, participates in pre-consumer food waste reduction by having all of its food locations automatically deposit any food waste accumulated while preparing customers food. The food waste that is accumulated is then placed in a composting bin that all locations have within their food facility. This food is then collected by the Rebel Recycling Program with the rest of the compost that is accumulated throughout campus.

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

Trayless dining has been employed at UNLV for a significant number of years. Portion sizes are reduced when and if the Dining Common manger sees people not eating large portions of the non-buffet items that are plated by employees. It is not a fool proof method of portion size reduction, but it is on their radar.

Rebel Recycling and UNLV Dining do hold Weigh the Waste events in the Dining Commons to educate people about only taking the amount of food they will eat and not wasting food. Plates are scrapped in view of the students and the students with clean plates are loudly congratulated. The weights of the food collected in that period is later posted in the Dining Commons and also distributed in two emailed newsletters. All the sneeze guards on the buffet style areas of the Dining Commons have stickers reminding student to only take what they can eat. More could and should be done in this area, but the beginnings of a comprehensive program have been started in this reporting period.

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):

Reusable to-go food containers can be purchased at the Dining Commons for $5. The student brings back the container for cleaning, and can get a new container. When they are leaving campus for winter break or summer vacation, their $5 deposit is returned.

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):

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:

Refills of drip coffee are available at POD, Einstein's, Coffee Bean, and Starbucks. The refill price is between $1 and $1.35 with a reusable mug.

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

UNLV Dining actively participates with UNLV Rebel Recycling when an event requests compostable ware. UNLV Dining will work with their client in selecting the proper amount of utensils to purchase and therefore order for the event. Large UNLV events, such as UNLV Premier and UNLV Festival of Communities, have become zero waste events with the help of UNLV Dining purchasing the proper compostable ware that are BPI certified. UNLV Dining hopes and the UNLV Rebel Recycling Program hope to convert more events into zero waste.

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

We typically do not weigh materials collected from Move-Out in Residence Halls. In the one year that the materials were weighed, the tonnage was approximately 4.5 tons, but the material was not weighed in 2010 or 2013. Surplus/Property Control does not weigh the materials re-sold in Surplus Sales.

The cubic yards of landscape waste, diverted in the baseline and performance year, were also not weighed or included in the first data field on this page. The weight was also not estimated and included in either category.

Materials that were landfilled are not weighed and can not be accurately estimated in the performance year. UNLV has a service contract so the 60+ small dumpsters are not weighed. Tonnages can be provided on the compactors and roll offs, but this would not provide an accurate portrait of the landfilled materials because it excludes the three and four yard dumpsters on campus.

Overall, we will start to weigh and track materials better so we are getting full credit for all our reduce, reuse and recycling efforts.

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.