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Resource and waste management

Heading Waste

Sustainable resource and waste management is about using material resources efficiently to reduce the amount of waste produced and, where waste is generated, dealing with it in a way that actively contributes to the economic, social and environmental goals of sustainable development.

University students and staff are large consumers of goods and services in relation to their study, teaching, research and generally living/working at the University. Each purchase has a consequence resulting from the combined impact of the manufacture, transport, use and disposal of that product.

Procurement Policy

Sustainable procurement is now included as a key consideration in the University's Procurement Policy. Sustainable procurement sees a shift from purchasing goods services, utilities and works under conventional procurement criteria of price and quality, to incorporating triple bottom line outcomes.

Waste Reduction and Resource Recovery Strategic Plan

The University of Tasmania is committed to supporting staff and students in making sustainable decisions around material resources use and disposal.

A University Waste Reduction and Resource Recovery Strategic Plan in currently being developed and will be made publicly available when finalised. This strategic plan will guide the entire University community in achieving our resource recovery and waste minimisation objectives using waste hierarchy in all university operations and activities.

Re-use scheme chartSustainable Events

The University strongly encourages those using our facilities to adhere to the Tasmanian Government Sustainable Event guidelines. to reduce material resource use and waste via:

  • Choosing the right site
  • Influencing the supply chain
  • Promoting sustainability
  • Recycling, composting or arranging collection of unwanted usable food for charities.

Carbon neutral certification

The University of Tasmania was the second University to be certified carbon neutral in Australia. Greenhouse gas emissions from a variety of material resources used at the University and different types of waste are calculated, reported and offset. Reducing material resources use and choosing the more appropriate disposal mode will contribute to reducing the University’s greenhouse gas emissions

Sustainable procurement

Choosing sustainable products is about trying to find a balance between different characteristics over the life of the product, considering the products supplied and the supplier practices themselves.

Priorities to keep in mind when commencing the procurement process are:

  • Use less; buy only what you need
  • Minimise packaging
  • Buy local (reduce transport from manufacturer to you)
  • Choose items that can be repaired and reused instead of single use
  • Choose items that can be recycled at end-of-life or are under a manufacturer’s product stewardship program

Re-use Program

Each year UTAS generates a large amount of unwanted furniture that can be re-used. The Re-Use Program is an online catalogue and furniture redistribution system within the University.

Find out more about the Re-Use Program at UTAS or to register your interest.

Resource Recovery Program and Building Recycling

Recycling is an easy way to reduce our waste to landfill and conserve valuable resources, however it is important to choose the right bin. The University encourages improved resource recovery on campus through its growing Resource Recovery Program (RRP), with the aim to:

  • Quantify the amount of waste generated
  • Improve opportunities for resource recovery from all waste types
  • Determine the infrastructure, services, and logistics resolutions needed to support a comprehensive resource recovery program

Staff and students can recycle the following items:

  • Commingles
  • Paper and cardboard
  • Batteries
  • Mobile phones
  • Printer cartridges
  • E-waste
  • Fluorescent lamps
  • Organic waste

Find out more about what and where you can recycle in the following document:

Find out more about where the recycling goes from Rethink Waste Tasmania:

Material resource use and waste data

The University is committed to monitoring and reporting key indicators in relation to resource purchase and recovery, for which the University collects various data:

SIPS projects

Grants and awards

Reduce

  • Think before you buy - Do you really need it? Could you hire it instead?
  • Think before you print and remember to double side your printing
  • Group orders with other areas to:
    • Save on purchasing costs and delivery impacts
    • Reduce waste from items which may not store well

Reuse

  • Register in the UTAS Re-use Program
  • Use reusable coffee cups - 'keep cups' are available from most campus cafes
  • Bring your own drink bottle and fill it at filtered water stations on campus
  • Keep unwanted paper (particularly near printers) as scrap paper

Buy

  • Buy products that:
    • Are made from reused, recycled or renewable materials, and that can be reused or recycled once they are obsolete
    • Use less energy or water in use
    • Do not have excessive packaging and with packaging that can be recycled
    • Are locally made
    • Are from socially responsible manufacturers
    • Are durable and/or can be repaired/upgraded
    • Can be returned to suppliers for recycling schemes
    • Are certified and verified sustainable products

Recycle

  • Choose the right bin. Recycling bins that are heavily contaminated with non-recyclable items are sent to landfill.
    • Take-away coffee cups and plastic bags contaminate our recycling, so please put them in the general rubbish bins
    • Put food in a compost system (if available in your area) or in the general rubbish bins.
    • Ensure you flatten boxes before placing into bins

To support waste reduction initiatives, please download this poster and display it in your area:

Contact

For more information on recycling, contact waste.service@utas.edu.au.