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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 66.35
Liaison Ben Champion
Submission Date May 2, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Arizona
OP-19: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.47 / 8.00 Benjamin Champion
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 2,288.69 Tons 379.16 Tons
Materials composted 723.78 Tons 0 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 57.40 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 3,032.83 Tons 5,988.30 Tons
Total waste generated 6,102.70 Tons 6,367.46 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, 2014 June 30, 2015
Baseline Year July 1, 2004 June 30, 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):

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 6,789 6,084
Number of employees resident on-site 28 25
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 487 487
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 41,631 35,743
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 12,479 11,842
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 1,074 3,468
Weighted campus users 41,968.25 35,102

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.15 Tons 0.18 Tons

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

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 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
Tires Yes
Other (please specify below) No

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

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:

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

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:

The Surplus Property Office (SPO) at the University of Arizona is responsible for redistributing materials such as furniture, computers, and vehicles to other departments on campus. When departments are finished with their materials SPO picks up the property and stores it in a warehouse near campus and catalogs the items online. The items can be purchased by other departments with delivery of the item to the department being free. If items are not reused by another department, the items are disposed to the public via auction to the public every second and fourth Tuesday of every month.

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):

Printing is limited through financial incentive in that printing on campus is not free. In most labs the black and white printing cost is 10 cents per page and color can be 20 cents to $1 in some labs. Additionally, students are encouraged to use double sided printing.

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:

The University of Arizona is pushing for greater use of digitization of materials produced by departments in order to be more efficient and to reduce financial costs incurred through the printing of materials. While some items are printed, the majority of documents like course catalogs, schedules and directories are fully digitized. The new UAccess software platform has integrated most of these documents into one online site.

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

At the end of every semester, the Residence Life Recycling and Sustainability Program partners with Tucson community non-profit organizations to set up collection bins in residence halls and at La Aldea Graduate Housing. The program encourages residents to donate unwanted items that are in usable to condition to community organizations.

Spring 2010 Stats
Total collected: 29.095 tons (58,190 lbs)

Salvation Army – 52,600 lbs
Community Food Bank – 5,590 lbs (4,367 meals)
Sonoran Center for Leadership Development – 1,431 books
Spring 2009 Stats
Total collected: 28.555 tons (57,110 lbs)

Salvation Army - 52,705 lbs.
Community Food Bank - 4,405 lbs. (3,524 meals)
Spring 2007 Stats
Total collected: 20.081 tons (40,162 lbs.)

Miscellaneous items including over 100 microwaves
Spring 2006 Stats
Total Collected: 16.315 tons (32,629 lbs.)

World Care/Tools for Schools - 7,122 lbs. Included household items, electrical appliances, books and school supplies, clothing, first-aid, food, printers, computer monitors etc
Community Food Bank - 3,627 lbs. of non-perishable food
Salvation Army - 21,880 lbs. Included clothing, food, bric-brac, TV, computers, stereos, microwaves, small appliances, plastic storage containers, sofas etc

Email recycling@life.arizona.edu if you have questions.

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 descriptive content in this submission reflects the information found in the 2012 AASHE STARS Report as submitted in February 2012 with some minor updates in February 2016. These policies and programs are still current. However, the waste amounts and weighted campus user data have been updated to reflect FY15 at UA so as to be more current. The latest update for these data was in February 2016.

Please note that for the baseline year data does not exist for the amount of material reused, donated, etc. UA has an active program for reuse of surplus materials, so the submission is not accurate in this regard.

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.