Materials Management


Program Areas

  • Paper reuse and reduction
  • Waste Reduction
    • Waste Audits
    • Styrofoam Reduction
    • Stuff Site
    • Terracycle
    • Electronic Waste Collection and Outreach

Paper Reuse and Reduction

Sustainability Strategic Plan Goal: 10% reduction in paper purchasing by 2016, with 2013 as the baseline level.
How is the ESC working to achieve this goal?
The Scrap Paper Campaign
The goal of the Scrap Paper Campaign is to educate the community on paper use inefficiencies through repurposing scrap paper and “orphan prints”, a term that describes printed documents that are forgotten and left at the printer. Orphan prints and extra scrap paper were collected and were made into scrap paper notepads. Approximately 150 scrap paper notepads were made in 2013 and distributed to students, faculty and staff. Aside from the benefit of reusing paper, the scrap paper notepads also serve as a physical reminder to the community of paper inefficiencies and highlight the potential for paper use reduction through conscientious printing practices. 

Waste Reduction

Sustainability Strategic Plan Goal: Achieve a 50% waste diversion rate by 2016 via reuse, recycling or compost strategies.
How is the ESC helping to achieve this goal?
(1)    Waste Audits
In order to obtain data on waste diversion as well as target education and outreach campaigns for waste reduction, the ESC conducts a yearly waste audit. The audits are completed by weighing trash and recycling generated from Kroon and Sage every day for a week to establish a recycling rate for F&ES. In addition the recycling contents are evaluated to determine a rate of purity. The data is used to target education concerning what can and cannot be recycled. Presentations on what is recyclable and what is not have been given at student orientation as well as staff and faculty meetings through interactive quizzes and recycling games. 

  Academic Year 2012-2013 Academic Year 2013-2014
Total Sage and Kroon Recycling Rate 35.7% 36.2%
  Academic Year 2012-2013 Academic Year 2013-2014
Overall F&ES Purity Rate 89.1% 89.4%
Trash Purity Rate 80.3% 90.1%
Recycling Overall Purity Rate 95.3% 98%
Desk Side Recycling and Trash Purity Rate 98% 48%
Compost Purity Rate 100% 100%
Lone Receptacles Purity Rate 85% 63%

Because these Waste Audits occur yearly, the ESC is able to quantify improvement and identify problem areas. For example, the table above indicates two areas where purity rates decreased from the 2013-2014. We determined the reasons for the reductions in purity as (1) the desk side recycling and trash bins are not well labeled, and (2) lone trash receptacles were not always paired with a recycling bin. With this knowledge we are able to target our efforts for the 2014-2015 Academic year and ensure that labeling is coherent and accessible and recycling and trash bins are always paired together to increase trash and recycling purity rates. 
SageWasteAudit Infographic copy
(2) Styrofoam Reduction
“BYO” Reusable Clamshell Containers
The School of Forestry has the BYO Café on the 3rd Floor of Kroon. “BYO” stands for “Bring-Your-Own Cup”. The ESC has partnered with BYO Café to offer reusable containers to displace the standard Styrofoam containers from nearby lunch carts. Students are able to use these reusable clamshell containers for lunch and return them to BYO Café after eating and cleaning the container.
These reusable containers have become a permanent fixture at F&ES, and the ESC has been working to expand this Styrofoam reduction effort to other schools. The ESC therefore sells these reusable containers outside of the lunch carts. This year, the ESC sold reusable clamshell containers for 4 days from October 6th -October 10th during Celebrate Sustainability Week. Containers were sold at the Medical School Campus and outside of Ingalls Rink. Over the course of 4 days, sales totaled 231 containers. In addition to the sales, students also set up a display to illustrate the amount of Styrofoam one person can save in just one month by using reusable containers at the lunch carts.
All profits generated from the clamshell container sales will go to fund sustainability initiatives at Yale University. 
ContainerSale KathyandLindsay
ContainerSale Lindsay
Cory & Stef
StuffSite 1
A shelf of the Stuff Site
(3) The Stuff Site
The Stuff Site is a center where students, staff and faculty can leave any reusable items that are in good condition that they no longer want and/or take any reusable item that they do want. In the 2013-2014 academic year, over 450 pounds of goods were donated to the Stuff Site, reused and therefore prevented from entering a landfill. 
Terracycle Flier
(4) Terracycle 
In the spring of 2014, the task force launched a Terracycle Pilot Program in the Kroon Hall and Sage Hall kitchens. Terracycle is an up-cycling company that collects wrappers and other items that are normally thrown out or recycled. These items are then turned into new products, such as lunch bags and purses, and a charitable donation is made on behalf of the collection site.
The ESC partnered with Yale University Press, an active Terracycle collection site since 2011, to collect candy wrappers, granola bar wrappers and energy bar wrappers.
E WasteCollection Infographic
Electronic waste poses a large threat to the environment, and people often do not know where to go to properly dispose of their E-waste. In October, the ESC partnered with Take2Recycle to put on an E-waste collection event at Yale. Residential electronics were collected over the course of two days.

You can find more information about drop-off locations for residential E-waste in Connecticut here.

E-waste that is Yale property must be disposed of through Environmental Health and Safety.