February 9, 2012
Queen’s community members who bring their lunches to campus will be able to dispose of organic waste in an environmentally-friendly way, thanks to the campus organics program.
“The Sustainability Office is expanding the organics program to include public spaces to prevent this waste from going to landfill and to improve the university’s waste diversion rate,” says Llynwen Osborne, Waste Coordinator.
The initiative is an extension of the existing organics collection program in the back-of-house food service operations on campus. This program is similar to the green bin program offered by the City of Kingston and accepts organic materials such as fruit and vegetable peels, coffee grounds, tea bags, paper towels and more. Several university departments have already enrolled in the office organics program including the Faculty of Education, Ban Righ Foundation, Physical Plant Services and the Regional Assessment and Resource Centre.
In January 2011, a campus-wide audit revealed that food waste makes up the largest portion of campus waste, at 69.5 per cent of the landfill stream.
Individuals interested in participating in the office organics program should first discuss the initiative with members of their office team, as the program relies on staff volunteers to empty the smaller interior organics collection container into the larger exterior container a few times a week. Departments who join the program will receive a countertop collection container, an information poster and a training session from the Sustainability Office and student volunteers.
Departments interested in participating in this new waste diversion program can fill out the Office Organics application located on the PPS website or contact the Sustainability Office for more information.