Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 55.88
Liaison Jim Walker
Submission Date April 30, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Texas at Austin
OP-23: Waste Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.15 / 3.00 Daniela Ochoa Gonzalez
Zero Waste Coordinator
Support Services
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Materials diverted from the solid waste landfill or incinerator:
3,243.10 Tons

Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator :
5,183.80 Tons

A brief description of programs, policies, infrastructure investments, outreach efforts, and/or other factors that contributed to the diversion rate, including efforts made during the previous three years:

1.Tailgate recycling program is a student led program with support from the Office of Sustainability, UT Athletics, and the Campus Environmental Center. Student leaders and volunteers distribute recycling bags and conduct recycling outreach in tailgate lots during each home football game. This program has expanded to include recycling in the baseball stadium.
2.Intercollegiate Athletics is recycling their oil and including recycling and composting (pre-consumption) on their daily operations. They also started composting post-consumer organic waste during the main football season within the stadium in partnership with Keep Austin Beautiful (KAB).
3.Trash to Treasure is a move-out waste diversion program organized by the Campus Environmental Center with support from Residence Life and the Division of Housing and Food Services. At the end of each semester, bins are place in all residence halls on campus to collect donated items. These items are then sold at a large sale on campus the following semester.
4.Green Events is a student led initiative to reduce the environmental impact of student events on campus. Green Events provides recycling and composting at student events and also conducts outreach and education regarding waste reduction.
5.During summer 2013, a recycling optimization program was conducted in classrooms and general purpose buildings throughout campus. Excess trash bins were removed from common spaces in buildings and all recycling bins were paired with trash cans and were provided with labels demonstrating what to recycling. In total over 300 recycling bins were added.
6.In celebration of America Recycles Day 2013, the Campus Environmental Center and the Office of Sustainability, with support from Facilities Services, UT Athletics, and Division of Housing and Food Services created the world’s largest recyclable cardboard box fort. This outreach activity aimed to energize students about recycling and environmental initiatives on campus.
7.Standard procedure to use University Surplus to move/eliminate unwanted furniture. Once a week school districts and/or open enrollment charter schools in the state are allowed to come and select furniture and electronics for their schools. All UT personnel have this option for needs at their workspace. Also, surplus computers are donated to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. We also offer all surplus items for auction 3 times a year.
8.UT Furniture Shop is a popular way to refurbish old furniture rather than buying new. They also re-furbish pieces of wood into toys to contribute to “Orange Santa” once a year.
9.Newly implemented wood pallet recycling program saved 27 tons in its first year.
10.Increasing rate of recycling in campus residential halls and on-campus dining.
11.Division of Housing and Food Service placed several multi-function waste/recycling/compost stations throughout their facilities and scheduled staff to be onsite promoting usage
12.The AT&T conference center has also been recycling and composting in the past couple years.
13.Composting Animal Bed Waste from animal research and food waste from charter schools

A brief description of any food donation programs employed by the institution:

Un-servable but edible food is collected in all dining locations for pick up by a local charity, Austin Baptist Food Pantry.

A brief description of any pre-consumer food waste composting program employed by the institution:

All kitchens contain bins specified for compostable materials and all food scraps, soiled paper and compostable disposable items and placed in these bins for eventual composting. We work with a composting company that is 8 miles from campus and they pick up the compostable materials on a regular basis.

A brief description of any post-consumer food waste composting program employed by the institution:

All food scraps returned from the ‘all you care to eat’ facilities are pulped and collected for composting. All retail dining facilities use compostable disposable materials and have custom designed bins to facilitate post-consumer sorting. We work with a composting company that is 8 miles from campus and they pick up the compostable materials on a regular basis.

Does the institution include the following materials in its waste diversion efforts?:
Yes or No
Paper, plastics, glass, metals, and other recyclable containers Yes
Food donations Yes
Food for animals Yes
Food composting Yes
Cooking oil Yes
Plant materials composting Yes
Animal bedding composting Yes
Batteries Yes
Light bulbs No
Toner/ink-jet cartridges Yes
White goods (i.e. appliances) Yes
Laboratory equipment Yes
Furniture Yes
Residence hall move-in/move-out waste Yes
Scrap metal Yes
Pallets Yes
Motor oil Yes
Tires Yes

Other materials that the institution includes in its waste diversion efforts:

This year's data collection is much better, and we were able to include recycling numbers from Document Solutions (paper and aluminum printing plates), Division of Housing and Food Service, Unions, Intercollegiate Athletics, Landscaping from Facilities Services, Animal Research, Brazos Garage, Paisano Ranch, AT&T center and the charter schools.

We used a standard calculation of 8.4 pounds per gallon of collected used oil to be recycled.

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.