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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 67.42
Liaison Beverley Ayeni
Submission Date Oct. 6, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Western University
OP-22: Waste Minimization

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.04 / 5.00 Stefanie De Adder
Sustainability Coordinator
Facilities Management
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Waste generated::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Materials recycled 1,814 Tons 1,382 Tons
Materials composted 486 Tons 371 Tons
Materials reused, donated or re-sold 34 Tons 13 Tons
Materials disposed in a solid waste landfill or incinerator 1,841 Tons 2,332 Tons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users”::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students 6,161 5,575
Number of residential employees 858 810
Number of in-patient hospital beds 0 0
Full-time equivalent enrollment 29,050 27,410
Full-time equivalent of employees 6,308 6,000
Full-time equivalent of distance education students 875 822

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year Jan. 1, 2013 Dec. 31, 2013
Baseline Year Jan. 1, 2010 Dec. 31, 2010

A brief description of when and why the waste generation baseline was adopted:

A baseline year of 2010 (calendar year) was selected as it represents the most current data available at the time of the last STARS submission (2011)


A brief description of any (non-food) waste audits employed by the institution:

Each year, as required by the Ontario Government under Ontario Regulation 102/94, Western performs waste audits of a representative sample of buildings. The audit includes all common recyclables (i.e. glass, paper, plastics, etc.), as well as waste that is destined for landfill.


A brief description of any institutional procurement policies designed to prevent waste:

Western's Sustainable Procurement Policy encourages the use of Western's Sustainable Procurement Guidelines, within which purchasers are encouraged to procure items with minimal waste outputs.


A brief description of any surplus department or formal office supplies exchange program that facilitates reuse of materials:

At Western, furniture and other assets can be diverted from the waste stream and sold through the "asset disposal" program. People who have items for sale can contact the "Purchasing" department. All items for sale will be listed on the web and open to the public. Items will be posted for two weeks. If there are no successful bidders, the item will be removed from the sale listing and the department will have to consider alternate options (e.g. donation).


A brief description of the institution's efforts to make materials available online by default rather than printing them:

To lessen the impact on the environment, the Office of the Registrar only produces an online version of the Academic Calendar for students. The Faculty Dean's Offices and Academic Counseling Offices will receive a limited number of printed copies.

In addition, the limited copies of Academic Calendars are printed on recycled paper and there are a few available for students to view in each of the on-campus libraries.
Western encourages everyone to use the online Academic Calendar, which is updated monthly.

Course schedules are all kept online, and most faculty choose to keep their syllabi online as well.


A brief description of any limits on paper and ink consumption employed by the institution:

At Western, students do not have access to free printing at libraries and computer labs. There are printing stations at most libraries; however, students need to buy a "Copy Card" which costs $1.00 (non-refundable) and can be purchased at the service desk of any library.

The prices for printing are 9 cents per page using a copy card or 15 cents per page if paying by cash.


A brief description of any programs employed by the institution to reduce residence hall move-in/move-out waste:

The move-out waste program is coordinated by Housing Staff. They arrange for large boxes to be placed at the front lobby area of each residence. Clothing/small furnishings, and even office supplies collected are donated to charity.
Housing also collects any non-perishable food items to be sent to the London Food Bank.

In the apartments, Housing runs a program where exchange and international students can drop off items like small appliances, utensils, etc. These items are stored and the following year they are made available to new exchange/international students so they do not have to purchase all new items that only get used for a few months.

The Off-Campus Housing Office also runs a "take it or leave it" program. People can "shop" (for free) for good furniture or leave behind stuff they do not need. This is operated in conjunction with a program to provide large bins that can be used by off-campus students rather than leaving garbage on the street and bothering neighbors.

Also, Western encourages students to start cleaning their rooms and bringing things home around Easter to decrease the amount of things they will have to move or dispose at the end of the year.


A brief description of any other (non-food) waste minimization strategies employed by the institution:

- Textbook donations overseas
- Battery collection bins across campus
- Ink/toner take-back program from Western's preferred stationery supply vendor
- Water Bottle Ban Pilot in two eateries
- Many others


A brief description of any food waste audits employed by the institution:

When performing the annual government-required waste audits, food waste is also separated out and weighed in order to determine what proportion of the waste that is being sent to landfill could have been composted.


A brief description of any programs and/or practices to track and reduce pre-consumer food waste in the form of kitchen food waste, prep waste and spoilage:

The kitchens within residences and select eateries on campus have pre-consumer food waste collection bins that are sent for composting.


A brief description of programs and/or practices to track and reduce post-consumer food waste:

Residence cafeterias and select eateries across campus have post-consumer food waste collection bins that are sent for composting.


A brief description of the institution's provision of reusable and/or third party certified compostable to-go containers for to-go food and beverage items (in conjunction with a composting program):

Hospitality Services' X-Change 4-Change Program allows students living in residence to purchase a reusable container (for $5), that they can keep for the year and use within residence dining halls. The containers are washed by Hospitality staff for the students.

Many of the food vendors across Western's campus serve food in paper containers/on paper plates which can be composted.


A brief description of the institution's provision of reusable service ware for “dine in” meals and reusable and/or third party certified compostable service ware for to-go meals (in conjunction with a composting program):

Residence eateries use reusable service ware for "dine in" meals.


A brief description of any discounts offered to customers who use reusable containers (e.g. mugs) instead of disposable or compostable containers in to-go food service operations:

At Western, customers receive $0.10 off when using their own reusable bottle or reusable mug at any on campus eateries.


A brief description of other dining services waste minimization programs and initiatives:
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The website URL where information about the institution’s waste minimization initiatives is available:

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.