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  • AASHE-STARS

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 67.81
Liaison Kelly Wellman
Submission Date Dec. 6, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Texas A&M University
OP-19: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.17 / 8.00 Nathan Jones
Manager, Water & Envrionmental Services
Utilities & Energy Management
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 17,897 Tons 716 Tons
Materials composted 2,610 Tons 362 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 7,842 Tons 13,442 Tons
Total waste generated 28,349 Tons 14,520 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 Sept. 1, 2016 Aug. 31, 2017
Baseline Year Sept. 1, 2004 Aug. 31, 2005

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):

FY2005 was chosen as the baseline year due the fact it was the maximum tonnage of waste materials that were landfilled and during a period prior to the university having access to a local recycling partner.


Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 11,680 9,353
Number of employees resident on-site 226 169
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 90 3
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 57,682 44,435
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 7,776 7,688
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 896 0
Weighted campus users 51,488 41,475.75

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.55 Tons 0.35 Tons

Percentage reduction in total waste generated per weighted campus user from baseline (0-100):
0

Percentage of materials diverted from the landfill or incinerator by recycling, composting, donating or re-selling, performance year:
72.34

Percentage of materials diverted from the landfill or incinerator (including up to 10 percent attributable to post-recycling residual conversion):
72.34

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 Yes
White goods (i.e. appliances) No
Laboratory equipment No
Furniture No
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:

Sewer sludge from the wastewater treatment plant operations is land applied to adjacent properties where costal rye grass is grown and cut for hay.


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) :
0 Tons

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?:
No

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?:
Yes

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?:
Yes

Average contamination rate for the institution’s recycling program (percentage, 0-100):
25

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:

TAMU delivers materials to a local commercial recycling operation who handles the quality control per their permitting agreement with the State of Texas.


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:

TAMU has formally approved and began an uniform recycling labeling program and marketing campaign in increase recycling from university facilities and grounds in 2016. A Solid Waste Minimization Specialist was added in 2017 to further enhance the facilities and ground recycling programs.


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

TAMU has a Geography class routinely performs waste audits on our various waste and recycling streams as part of their class projects each semester. The audits are coordinated with the various reporting groups and the data is shared with each.


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

None


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

The Surplus Property Office maintains a list of current surplus or salvage property and informs Texas A&M University and/or system members, other state agencies, political subdivisions, and assistance organizations of the Surplus Property and make available for viewing Monday thru Friday during normal business hours. Customers browsing the warehouse claim items and file the appropriate property transfer forms with the Surplus Office.

During the ten (10) business days after property is viewable and transferred to the Surplus Property Office, a transfer to another state agency/Texas A&M University Department has priority over any other type of transfer.


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):

Students receive an allocation of printing as part of their Computer Access Fee. Any printing in excess of their allocation is billed to the student.


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:

Texas A&M no longer prints the course catalog or the course schedule. The last time the course catalog was printed was the '09 - '10 version. This was the 132nd course catalog printed in Texas A&M's history. Catalog 133 and 134 were available only online in a PDF version. Catalog 135 is currently being constructed and there are no plans to print it.

Course schedules are also available only online. The last course schedule printed was in the Fall of 2003.

The campus directory is printed; however, measures have been taken to reduce the amount of paper needed in the creation and distribution of the directory. The information collected to compile the ever-changing directory is done electronically, through pdfs. In the past this information was collected through paper. Additionally, only a limited number of directory copies are printed each semester. These are distributed only on request, since the directory is available online.


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

Texas A&M University partners with one or several of the local entities that handles re-usable materials (e.g., Goodwill, Salvation Army, Twin Cities Missions). These entities will establish both personed and unpersoned locations in both the primary residence hall areas.


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:
---

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.