Materials & Waste

UVA’s materials and waste footprint covers the purchases & waste produced in UVA’s health system, academic buildings, residential halls, athletics venues and more. Currently, UVA generates approximately 15,000 tons of municipal solid waste annually and has seen a decrease of approximately 4.7% in total waste since 2014.

UVA works to reduce the environmental impacts of UVA’s materials and waste through a comprehensive recycling program that includes initiatives to reuse materials throughout the institution to both save money and resources.

Materials & Waste Goals

Reduce the total tonnage of waste generated at UVA by 50% below 2014 levels by 2035

Landfill less than 2000 tons of waste annually by the year 2035

Increase environmentally preferable purchasing as a percentage of purchases

Progress:

 

Materials and waste graph from the UVA Sustainability 2018-2019 Annual Report

Optimizing Purchasing

UVA looks to process improvements and more sustainable purchasing options through UVA’s Procurement Working Group.

Encouraging Reuse

The UVA ReUse Store supports the collection, sale, and reuse of surplus property, which includes University-owned unneeded, unclaimed, lost or abandoned property. The program support’s the University’s sustainability efforts by extending the life cycle of items that may have otherwise been directed to a landfill, roughly 1.2 million pounds since its opening in 2018.

ROSE Program

The ROSE Program (Reusable Office Supply Exchange) collects gently or never used office supplies from departments throughout UVA and makes these materials available to the community. 

Increasing Recycling & Compost

UVA’s recycling system separates paper, cardboard, glass, cans, and plastics 1-7 into separate bins to reduce contamination. Recycling is hand-sorted and baled and then processed into new materials at facilities in North Carolina. Visit the UVA Recycling page to learn how to recycle at UVA. Electronic waste is also collected in bins throughout Grounds.

Composting programs throughout Grounds have seen an exponential increase in recent years, with UVA composting 805 tons in 2018. UVA Dining offers back of house composting at over 20 locations. Composting is strongly encouraged at all events at UVA, with major events such as Reunions and various athletic events working towards zero waste.

Resources

UVA Recycling

Composting

ROSE Program

Zero Waste Event Guide

UVA Dining’s Composting 101

Cville Tomorrow’s Guide to Recycling