Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 51.72
Liaison Alex Frank
Submission Date Aug. 1, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Wisconsin-Madison
OP-19: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.58 / 8.00 Alex Frank
Sustainability Analyst
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 3,204.42 Tons 2,820.45 Tons
Materials composted 463.01 Tons 0 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 493.29 Tons 816.83 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 5,391.65 Tons 6,633.72 Tons
Total waste generated 9,552.37 Tons 10,271 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 July 1, 2017 June 30, 2018
Baseline Year July 1, 2006 June 30, 2007

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):

FY07 was adopted as the preferred baseline year for STARS data reporting as it represented consistent data availability across the majority of credits.

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 7,524 7,259
Number of employees resident on-site 178 178
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 39,624 37,237
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 17,908.30 16,255.20
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 0 0
Weighted campus users 45,074.73 41,978.40

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.21 Tons 0.24 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 Yes
Furniture Yes
Residence hall move-in/move-out waste Yes
Scrap metal Yes
Pallets Yes
Tires No
Other (please specify below) Yes

A brief description of other materials the institution has recycled, composted, donated and/or re-sold:

Other materials recycled, composted, donated and/or re-sold not captured above include:
- Books
- Batteries
- Cardboard
- Styrofoam Packaging

UW-Madison has a tire recycling program but no tire recycling was recorded in FY18 or FY07.

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:

UW-Madison holds an annual contest to create and pitch a valuable, innovative or socially beneficial product or service using re-purposed materials (https://www.housing.wisc.edu/residence-halls/learning-communities/startup/100-hour-challenge/). In addition, UW-Madison recently rolled-out a test of new waste signage (https://sustainability.wisc.edu/recycle-right/).

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

UW-Madison periodically performs waste audits to assess the performance of initiatives (such as the new signage noted above, or as a part of a green event, https://sustainability.wisc.edu/certifications/green-events/).

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

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

Surplus with a Purpose (SWAP, https://swap.wisc.edu/) receives over 20 tons of surplus property every week from UW-Madison and other state facilities. These items are re-purposed locally or sold through an online auction.

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):

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:

UW-Madison has a successful sustainable move-out program (https://www.housing.wisc.edu/about/sustainability/waste/sustainability-move-out/)

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

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data reported above does not include the weight of Fluorescent, HID, Incandescent, Flood, and U-Tube Lamps as weight data was not available for the performance or baseline year. All of these materials are recycled and their weight is expected to be minimal compared to total campus waste.

Additionally, data reported above includes estimates from FY07 for paper recycling from the on-campus print shop (https://printing.wisc.edu/), land-filled materials from the Memorial Union, and all materials re-purposed through SWAP (https://swap.wisc.edu/). Trending data from 2018 to the earliest reported data (ranging from 2008 to 2013) were used to produce these estimates. Trends were relatively consistent and should be reliable estimates for these waste streams in our baseline year.

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.