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Projects Updates for Zero Waste iCAP Team

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  1. ZW011 State Farm Center Recycling - Submitted

    On May 5, 2023, Zero Waste iCAP Team submitted the ZW011 State Farm Center Recycling recommendation. Please see attached.

    Without appropriate recycling infrastructure on the upper concourse of State Farm Center, campus is losing valuable recyclable materials sent to the landfill (particularly with recyclable items left in the arena). Additionally, the installation of permanent recycling bins on the upper concourse would facilitate the ability for fans to recycle at any athletic or entertainment event held at State Farm Center.

    The purpose of this recommendation is to be a conversation-starter in regard to permanent recycling on the upper concourse. The proposed use of MAX-R bins is a suggestion, based on campus’ success with the roll-out of these bins throughout our facilities.

    Suggested unit/department to address implementation: Division of Intercollegiate Athletics

  2. ZW008 Adopt a Highway/Drain - Returned

    ZW008 Adopt a Highway/Drain was returned to the Zero Waste iCAP Team by the iWG. See the following message:

    Hello Zero Waste iCAP Team,

    Last spring, the Zero Waste iCAP Team submitted a recommendation regarding the adopt a highway/drain programs (  The iCAP Working Group discussed this a couple times and there were a few concerns raised by the iWG and by F&S, such as how we can ensure safety of a student group working on a street drain. You can see the related meeting notes attached here.  

    We are returning this recommendation to your team for review.  If you believe this recommendation is a priority, please discuss it with the Land and Water iCAP Team and the Resilience iCAP Team to refine it before resubmitting. 

    Thank you,

    Morgan and Jen



    Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP)

    iCAP Working Group co-chairs

    University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

    See the ZW008 Adopt a Highway/Drain recommendation here.

  3. ZW010 Tailgate Recycling - Successful

    Following is the response from DIA:


    The Division of Intercollegiate Athletics (DIA) approves the recommendation to work with Facilities and Services and the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and the Environment to implement a recycling program at football tailgate events. Assistant Athletic Director Tim Knox will be responsible for coordinating the implementation for DIA.


    See the iWG assessment for ZW010 Tailgate Recycling here.

  4. ZW010 Tailgate Recycling - Transmitted

    On 4/19/2023, the ZW010 Tailgate Recycling recommendation was transmitted to Dr. Ehab Kamarah, the Associate Vice Chancellor and Executive Director of F&S, Josh Whitman and Timothy Knox, at the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics (DIA), with the following email. The iWG assessment is attached.

    Dear Dr. Kamarah, Mr. Whitman and Tim,

    The Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP) Working Group (iWG) recently approved recommendation ZW010 from the Zero Waste iCAP Team. The team recommends that Facilities and Services and the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics work with the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and the Environment to implement a recycling program at tailgate events during the 2023 football season and beyond. The expectation is that doing so would increase the visibility of campus sustainability efforts and put UIUC on par with fellow Big Ten institutions that are integrating sustainability into athletics. Additional details are provided in the attached recommendation and assessment.

    The Formal iCAP Procedures include a section on campus unit responsibilities upon receipt of a recommendation, and we respectfully request your response to this recommendation by May 12, if possible. If you have any questions regarding this recommendation, we are happy to jump on a call with you to discuss it.


    Jennifer Fraterrigo



    Illinois Climate Action Plan (iCAP)

    iCAP Working Group co-chairs

    University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

    See the ZW010 Tailgate Recycling recommendation here.

  5. ZW010 Tailgate Recycling - Submitted

    The Zero Waste iCAP Team submitted the attached ZW010 Tailgate Recycling recommendation to the iWG on 3/24/2023. The recommendation states:

    The Zero Waste Team recommends that Facilities & Services (F&S) and the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics (DIA) work with the Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment (iSEE) to implement a recycling program at tailgate events during the 2023 football season and beyond.

    The following would require F&S to provide blue bags, which Athletics will distribute to tailgate participants when they are checking in by car. These bags will contain paper instructions stapled onto each blue bag. The attached paper will convey what recyclable materials can be placed in the blue bag, and will include a map with locations of “collection hubs” (location at which a F&S recycling pan is placed) – at Lot 31 and Lot 32 – so tailgaters know where to bring their filled blue bags. In addition, F&S and iSEE will work together to solicit volunteer support for the tailgate events. Volunteers will be spread across the tailgating lots to distribute more blue bags as needed and offer educational support to fans as questions about trash and recycling arise.

    Following the end of the tailgating event, volunteers will assist with clean up (recyclables collection) from the Grange Grove field. The volunteers will work with DIA to ensure that F&S receives the recyclables from this clean-up session, prior to DIA’s sweep.

    Additionally, the Zero Waste Team requests 1-2 iSEE tents to establish a visible presence at each “collection hub.” It is recommended that 2 volunteers will be manning each tent, where they will be collecting filled blue bags from fans, handing out more blue bags, and incentivizing/rewarding participants with free merchandise (as available).

    F&S, iSEE, and DIA will communicate with Illini Union/the Bookstore regarding opportunities for partnership. Additionally, the F&S Zero Waste Coordinator (ZWC) will communicate with campus’ Coca-Cola Representative, Jake Slager, about allocating the mutual sustainability funds for tailgating merchandise. The ZWC will also work with the DIA marketing team to ensure that fans attending the game (season ticket and single ticket holders) are aware of the tailgate recycling activities happening, through their communications strategy.

    Following the football event, the Zero Waste Team recommends that DIA facilitate a survey opportunity for fans, with input regarding what questions are asked from F&S and iSEE. During the November 14th, 2022 inaugural Fighting Illini, Fighting Waste basketball event, DIA surveyed fans with the following questions:

    1. “Did you notice that this [basketball] game was a recycling-focused event?” YES / NO
    2. “Did you recycle your bottles and/or cans at the [basketball] game?” YES / NO
    3. “Do you support having more emphasis on recycling in future [basketball] games?” YES / NO

    It is recommended that a similar approach is taken for tailgate recycling. Allowing fans to voice their feedback is crucial for DIA, iSEE, and F&S to improve on fan experience for future events.

    After the football game, volunteers will work with DIA to sweep the stadium for leftover recyclables.

    Suggested unit/department to address implementation: Facilities & Services, the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics

  6. Zero Waste iCAP Meeting 3/10/2023

    On January 30th, the Zero Waste iCAP team met to discuss final thoughts on the finished tailgate recycling recommendation, the feasibility of a large scale composting program on campus, and current work with the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). 

    Meeting minutes are attached.

    Attached Files: 
  7. Zero Waste iCAP Meeting 1/30/2023

    On January 30th, the Zero Waste iCAP team met to discuss the details of the suggested tailgate recycling program and ended the meeting with a plan going forward. The team also discussed the outcome of the ZW009 review during the iWG meeting that took place the same morning. 

    Meeting minutes are attached. 

    Attached Files: 
  8. Zero Waste iCAP Meeting 12/8/2022

    On December 8th, the Zero Waste iCAP team met to discuss a new approach to creating recommendations for next semester. During the meeting, the team created subcommittees based on aspects of the key priorities document and provided feedback on an environmental engineering sustainability project. 

    Meeting minutes are attached.

  9. ZW009 Project4Less Expansion - Submitted

    The Zero Waste iCAP Team submitted the attached ZW009 Project4Less Expansion recommendation to the iWG on 12/7/22. The recommendations states as follows:

    We recommend that University Housing Dining Services works with Project 4 Less to divert wasted food to those in need. Project 4 Less packages pre-consumer food waste (untouched food) from LAR dining hall each week and Housing coordinates the food’s delivery to local food pantries, such as Wesley Food Pantry. Meals are then provided to community members experiencing food insecurity. Project 4 Less is currently only working out of LAR dining hall, and there is much more food to be recovered, such as from Ikenberry, ISR, and PAR dining halls.
    Similar to how Project 4 Less currently collaborates with Housing at LAR, we request that:
    ● Housing stores and sets up materials (cold carts, boxes) before packaging events
    ● Housing saves and stores the food that needs to be packaged
    ● Housing arranges the transportation logistics (perhaps stops could be added to existing routes)
    Ultimately, we recommend that Housing work with Project 4 Less to expand beyond LAR. Project 4 Less has the capacity to provide volunteers as part of a gradual expansion to other Dining Halls.

  10. PWR010 Ethics Video recommendation - Supplanted by PWR014

  11. Zero Waste iCAP Meeting 11/7/2022

    On November 7th, the Zero Waste iCAP team met to discuss DIA sustainability initiatives with Tim Knox and made edits on the Project 4 Less expansion recommendation to be submitted in the coming month(s). 

    Meeting minutes are attached.

  12. Take the Drinking Water Survey!

    Take the survey here!

    This survey is the result of a recommendation by the Zero Waste iCAP Team and is intended to gain a better understanding of drinking water behavior at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

    The survey is broken into eight sections. Section one asks demographic questions, sections two through seven ask you to respond to statements on a 1-5 scale, and the last section asks open ended questions. Please answer as truthfully as possible. The survey should take no more than 5 minutes. 

    Participants will be entered into a drawing for a $50 Illini Bookstore gift card!

    To get involved or share your ideas, please contact  

  13. Campus Sustainability Celebration - 10/17/22

    The 2022 Campus Sustainability Celebration was a huge success! Thank you to all who participated! The PowerPoint presentation is attached, and the agenda for the event was as follows:

    • 3-3:15 PM – Welcome
      • Jennifer Fraterrigo, on behalf of Director Madhu Khanna (iSEE)
      • Chancellor Jones
      • Vice Chancellor Susan Martinis (OVCRI)
    • 3:15 – 3:30 PM – Holistic initiatives
      • Plastic reduction (Jen)
      • Clean energy/Solar Farm 3 (Morgan)
      • Greener Campus Program (Meredith)
    • 3:30 – 4:40 PM – iCAP Team presentations
      • Energy
      • Transportation
      • Land and Water
      • Zero Waste
      • Education
      • Engagement
      • Resilience
    • 4:40 – 5 PM – Student groups (SSLC, SSC) – Jack Reicherts and Maiah Caise
      • Closing remarks by Jennifer Fraterrigo (on behalf of Madhu Khanna)
    • 5 – 6 PM – Celebration - refreshments, roundtable forum with each iCAP Team, student tabling session  
  14. Zero Waste iCAP Meeting 10/5/2022

    On October 5th, the Zero Waste iCAP team met to make final edits on Campus Sustainability Celebration slides, foster a conversation on Zero Waste initiatives with the Division of Intercollegiate Athletics (DIA), and discuss potential recommendations relating to food waste at dining halls.

    Meeting Minutes are attached.

    Attached Files: 
  15. Varsity Room Sustainability Initiatives

    Team Clerk Claire Keating met with Zero Waste Team Clerk Nikki Palella and Justin Holding, a member of the engagement team.

    The meeting content included brainstorming zero-waste food containers for athletes who participate in meals provided by DIA and Hendrick House.

    Meeting also covered updates on Green Sports Alliance recommendation and future contacts.


  16. Urban Biodiversity Master Plan Student Support

    Biodiversity Plan intern Gabriel Harper-Hagen is looking for students and student groups to help him develop two iNaturalist surveys for the project. Here is the detailed explanation from Gabe:

    The survey will act as a pilot for future surveying around campus and the broader community. We will have two surveys: one focused on animals and one focused on plants. This is because of the different methods of surveying each. The surveys will benefit from as many students that would be interested in this for either one (Or both). The survey will attempt to efficiently gather data about the diversity of plant and animal species found on campus to create a baseline for what is present and to help identify gaps on the campus where diversity may be lacking. If successful, I hope to expand the model to other parts of the community including the park districts to have larger community based BioBlitz seasonally to keep track of the diversity in the area and measure success of the biodiversity plan. 


    As far as students can help, we need enough people to survey the area efficiently in a reasonable amount of time. The student groups and individual students would be helping in an initial survey that focuses only on the campus. My thought is that a date will be set for each of the two surveys where the participants can join to go over brief instructions on identifying plants with iNaturalist, adding them to the project, and explaining the purpose of surveying. iNaturalist allows for specific project data to be collected within a region which is then peer reviewed. Ideally, there will be some experts (students or professors if appropriate) that join for each survey to help with logistics and identification. I hope this will not only be a useful database for our campus to utilize, but also a fun learning experience. 


    All iCAP students and environmental student groups are encouraged to participate. If interested, please email Gabe ( and Resilience iCAP Team clerk Asli Topuzlu (