Project Title: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Zero Waste Football Game
Sector: Higher Education
Location: Champaign-Urbana, IL
Services: Implementation Assistance, Stakeholder Engagement, Fostering Sustainable Behavior
Background: In Fall 2014, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign participated in the Gameday Recycling Challenge for the first time. The Gameday Recycling Challenge is a friendly competition for colleges and universities to promote waste reduction at their home football games. The Challenge occurred on October 25th for the homecoming football game against the University of Minnesota. During the game, efforts were implemented to reduce waste by composting and recycling. At the end of the game, all the waste streams were sorted and weighed, and the results were tabulated. Result categories included waste minimization, diversion rate, greenhouse gas reduction, recycling, and organics reduction. Each participating game’s data is used to rank and determine the Challenge winners. The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign achieved a diversion rate of 60% by improving source separation of compostable and recyclable materials. The University will use this year’s diversion rate as a baseline to improve efforts going forward in upcoming years.
Approach: ISTC led a multi-department collaboration to identify and deploy collection stations for composting and recycling across Memorial Stadium. ISTC also lead the effort to recruit and manage over 150 volunteers to guide fans on recycling practices. Additionally, ISTC worked with concessionaires and caterers to ensure that most of the service was either recyclable or compostable.
Results: The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign achieved a diversion rate of 60% by improving source separation of compostable and recyclable materials during this event. Among the Big 10 Conference schools participating in the Challenge that year, UIUC placed third in the “recycling” category and second in the “organics” category.
- Zero Waste Program Case Study: Gameday Recycling Challenge
- Illinois Block I Card Stunts vs. Minnesota 10/25/14 (YouTube video showing creation of recycling symbol by crowd)
- Marching Illini & Alumni Band Halftime: The Music of Motown, October 25, 2014 (Marching Illini show featuring formation of recycling symbol to recognize Gameday Recycling Challenge efforts)
- UPDATED: Illinois diverts 9.3 tons of waste at football game (iSEE news release)
- Zero Waste Gameday Challenge Fall 2014 (iCAP Portal entry)
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