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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 Silver
Overall Score 45.51
Liaison Mat Thijssen
Submission Date Nov. 6, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Waterloo
OP-19: Waste Minimization and Diversion

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.95 / 8.00 Mat Thijssen
Sustainability Manager
Sustainability Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total waste generated (and diverted):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 2,112.48 Tons 2,109.51 Tons
Materials composted 452.18 Tons 361.84 Tons
Materials donated or re-sold 10.42 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed through post-recycling residual conversion 0 Tons 0 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 3,562.31 Tons 3,358.74 Tons
Total waste generated 6,137.38 Tons 5,830.09 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 Jan. 1, 2017 Dec. 31, 2017
Baseline Year Jan. 1, 2016 Dec. 31, 2016

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 5,543 5,316
Number of employees resident on-site 0 0
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 35,156 34,325
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 5,874 5,719
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 1,007 978
Weighted campus users 31,403 30,628.50

Total waste generated per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total waste generated per weighted campus user 0.20 Tons 0.19 Tons

Percentage reduction in total waste generated per weighted campus user from baseline:
0

Percentage of materials diverted from the landfill or incinerator by recycling, composting, donating or re-selling, performance year:
41.96

Percentage of materials diverted from the landfill or incinerator (including up to 10 percent attributable to post-recycling residual conversion):
41.96

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 No
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 Yes
Other (please specify below) Yes

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

Electronic waste, batteries, cardboard, lightbulbs, writing utensils, used clothing


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?:
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?:
No

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:

Waterloo hosts an annual “Waste Week” campaign in October, in coordination with national Waste Reduction Week, to encourage proper sorting and recycling practices, including quizzes, prizes, challenges and marketing.


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

Waterloo is required under Ontario Regulation 102/94 to conduct annual waste audits to identify opportunities to increase waste diversion within its facilities. An external auditor is retained to examine 1-day samples at various buildings across campus to note how and where recyclable or compostable materials are being inappropriately disposed in the trash.


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:

Waterloo’s Central Stores team supports the redistribution of gently used assets (i.e. furniture, equipment) among campus departments. If the items are not recirculated within the University after a length of time, they are sold at occasional surplus sales.


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):

All public and most office printers have been set to default 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:
---

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

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:
---

Many of Waterloo’s recycling tracking programs were not in place until 2016, even though programs have existed in some cases for decades. There were pilot programs available for organics collection, as well as recycling collection, for which the university has no data. As such, 2016 was included as the most accurate baseline year. Organics data included in the 2017 performance year included yard waste that is composted on-site in a windrow, organics collected and composted in a tumbler by a student group, and regional collection of back-of-house food waste.

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.