Waste Stream

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LandfillThe Goal: To become a minimum-waste University.

The Problem: During the past four decades, the U.S. has witnessed an extraordinary growth in its waste stream. In 1960, we produced 88 million tons of waste (or 2.68 pounds per person per day). In 2005, we produced 245.7 million tons (4.5 pounds per person per day). 1

Building, operating, and maintaining waste disposal infrastructure costs billions of dollars.

Opportunities for St. Lawrence University:

From 2001 to 2005, SLU recycled approximately 21 to 26% of its total waste stream, saving disposal costs of about $28,000 annually (Recycling Data - access restricted to on campus). Had this recyclable material been disposed of as trash, it would have required an additional 1600 cubic yards of landfill space, roughly equivalent to our football field covered with a one foot layer of trash.

Appendix - Waste Stream

Model Programs:

Allegheny: This is a report regarding the $100,000 composter Allegheny obtained through a grant.

Dickinson College: This is an article written by a Dickinson student from the class of ’07. The article discusses the expansion of Dickinson’s composting program and the success and benefits composting has brought to the school, the community and the environment.

Colorado College (Other): Colorado College instituted a successful composting facility . Colorado College worked with Green Mountain Technologies in order to create a composting process that fit in with the other duties of the school’s food provider, Sodexho. Colorado College instituted an Earth Tub behind their dining hall for easy composting and therefore waste reduction.

Ithaca College (Other): Ithaca College's aerated static-pile composting facility is located at the physical plant, and has been in operation since 1993. The college composts food waste from all of the dining halls. The link explains the composting project at Ithaca.

Connecticut College: Connecticut College has a policy to reduce the use of paper on campus. This document discusses various strategies that the college uses to reduce paper us.


SLU Success Stories:

  • The SLU Reuse program gives an alternative to people for getting rid of their old furniture, appliances, computers, etc. Rather than throwing these items away and having them end up in a land fill, one can bring these items to the SLU Reuse trailer for donation.
  • A campus recycling program recycles approximately 25% of all waste.