Overall Rating Bronze
Overall Score 25.45
Liaison Meghann Jarchow
Submission Date Jan. 30, 2023

STARS v2.2

University of South Dakota
OP-18: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.64 / 8.00 Emily Theroux
Sustainability & Environment
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 41.03 Tons 22.45 Tons
Materials composted 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 3.09 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 1,105.19 Tons 829.08 Tons
Total waste generated 1,149.31 Tons 851.53 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 Aug. 1, 2020 July 31, 2021
Baseline Period Aug. 1, 2019 July 31, 2020

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

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 1,922 2,050
Number of employees resident on-site 0 0
Number of other individuals resident on-site 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 7,671 7,671
Full-time equivalent of employees 1,377 1,421
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 2,890 2,890
Weighted campus users 5,099 5,164

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.23 Tons 0.16 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
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:

Vehicle oil and inc cartridges are also recycled. Surplus also takes unused items from campus and resells, donates, and recycles them.

Materials intended for disposal but subsequently recovered and reused on campus, performance year:
0 Tons

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:

The recycling workers remove contaminations by hand, as well as sinage throughout campus to display how and what to recycle.

A brief description of the institution's waste-related behavior change initiatives:

The campus coffee shops offer a discount on brewed coffee to customers who bring their own mug. Campus dining has eliminated trays to reduce food waste. All buildings have water bottle refill stations, making it convenient to refill instead of drinking bottled water. The move-out program makes it convenient to donate usable items at the end of the school year.

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

The Atlas Zero Waste assessment was done in 2020 to review the campus' waste management system. This evaluates both hard goods and soft goods and is scored based on the initiatives in place. It also gives recommendations for improvement for the University.
The Verdis Waste Study completed in 2016 to asses the waste and recycling system on campus. This report also contains recommendations for the University.

A brief description of the institution's procurement policies designed to prevent waste:

USD follows the state law on recycling paper. This law requires Green Seal certified, Ecologo certified, or comply with minimum EPA guidelines.

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

Surplus collects various no longer needed office supplies and resells, donates, recycles, or disposes of them. The items are not tracked but are kept in a building off campus.

A brief description of the institution's platforms to encourage peer-to-peer exchange and reuse:

None campus-wide.

A brief description of the institution's limits on paper and ink consumption:


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

USD encourages DocuSign for most forms that need to be signed. The professors are required to post course packets online.

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

The Move Out Program was started in 2020 to help reduce waste by having donation stations set up outside of the resident halls. The items were collected by volunteers to ensure quality and then were donated.

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

The recycling team on campus does reuse plastic bin liner bags as many times as possible. They also drop off clean plastic film found in recycling bins at Hy-Vee for plastic film recycling.

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

The number for materials donated and resold is from the move out program and food recovery network donation data.

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.