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Projects Updates for Zero Waste SWATeam


  1. PWR015 Lightbulb Replacement - Submittal

    The PWR SWATeam compiled the following recommendation:

    "The PWR & ECBS SWATeams suggest a switch from conventional incandescent light bulbs to LED or CFL light bulbs
    • This switch would occur during REPLACEMENT of expired bulbs in all buildings and/or during remodeling. Such a switch needs to be implemented gradually, i.e., replacing the current incandescent lightbulbs as they stop working, with lower energy and longer life CFL bulbs."

    See attached the SWATeam recommendation PWR015 Lightbulb Replacement with comments from PWR SWATeam members.

    An iCAP Working Group assessment of this recommendation began on July 2, 2019.

  2. Update on the Illini Gadget Garage

    Members of the Purchasing, Waste and Recycling Sustainability Working Advisory Team (SWAT),

    The main reason for my note though, is to provide an update on the Illini Gadget Garage (IGG) project. As you know, ISTC decided it would no longer be coordinating the project, and there was some uncertainty about its future. I’m pleased to say that for now the Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning will be exploring “adoption” of the project on a trial basis, beginning next semester. I’ve copied Jamie Nelson and Jim Wentworth of CITL, who will be leading that effort, along with Amanda Elzbieciak, the IGG workshop manager, who has graciously agreed to work with CITL to host some pop-up repair workshops at the innovation spaces in the Armory, and to help with recruitment of volunteers and training. While the workshop space will still be at the IGG’s disposal for storing equipment, etc., next semester, CITL will focus project activities in its spaces at the Armory.

    So the project will continue in some capacity next semester. Whether it continues beyond that point will depend on many factors related to how well it ends up fitting with CITL’s core mission. I’ve also copied my original collaborators in launching the project, William Bullock and Martin Wolske, just so you all are familiar with the names of key people associated with the project and its history. Jamie and Jim, the PWR SWATeam, along with Morgan White, have been very supportive of the IGG project, and they are charged with making recommendations to the iCAP Working Group related to the campus’ waste reduction and prevention goals. At some point next semester, you may wish to discuss any challenges the project might be facing with the SWATeam, for feedback and guidance, or at least to help spread the word about pop-ups and other activities.

    There is nothing further to report for now, and CITL will want to work with Amanda to consider how best to announce their involvement next semester. I simply wanted to let this committee know the status of the situation, and say that I will work with Amanda after the winter break to ensure the transition is smooth. I look forward to seeing how this progresses and hope to see more efforts to foster reuse and repair on campus, in addition to recycling. Thanks to everyone who helped get the project to this point.

    Happy holidays!



    Joy Scrogum

    Sustainability Specialist

  3. discussion items email

    Associated Project(s): 

    Hello PWR SWATeam,


    I know you have several topics for your team to address this year, and I am so sorry I cannot attend the meeting on Monday!  This email is to share a few agenda items that I would appreciate your help with, as time permits this fall.


    1. Robert McKim is a new faculty member on this SWATeam, but he has been working with battery recycling all of last year.  Would you please review the report he will share and consider a formal SWATeam recommendation?
    2. I just sent an email regarding the Harding Band Building recycling system.  Please take a look at it and consider a formal recommendation.  I believe a walkthrough of the building may show an opportunity for a new bottles and cans recycling bin inside, and perhaps the large blue tote could be shifted into a more convenient spot during the game days. 
    3. The employees in civil engineering were surveyed by Becky Jonas (with assistance from Tim Stark) about recycling over the summer.  Please take a look at the results Becky has collected.  It is our intention to use your draft recommendation on indoor bin placement, to rearrange the bins in NCEL.  This should be done in consultation with the BSWs and Facility Manager in that building.  Please let me know which folks from your team would like to participate in the meeting with Tim Prunkard and Ramona Burns, about rearranging the indoor bins to increase the recycling rates.  At this time, I do not think a related recommendation is needed.
    4. During tailgates, there is a great opportunity to collect more recyclables in blue bags.  Someone shared the idea with me that we could ask DIA to provide blue bags and a simple flyer about what to recycle in the bags, at the entry ways for tailgate parking areas.  There is already a controlled entry point, so the implementation of handing out blue bags and instructions could be straightforward.  Do you think this could be a formal recommendation to DIA?
    5. The SmartWay recommendation was transmitted to the Illini Union and F&S Stores this week. We intend to have a webinar with instructions from the EPA SmartWay coordinators.  Would any of you be interested in participating in that conference call?
    6. As I understand it, the Purchasing Office has been shifted from the System level to the Campus level for reporting, and there are additional changes still in process about procurement policies and authority.  I met with Brad Henson last week, and he is determined to be available and participate in the SWATeam meetings.  He agreed to send a proxy when he cannot attend, and this Monday that is his intention.  While we were talking, I gave him a brief history on the paper policy discussion, and we thought it may make sense to have purchasing policies in the Campus Administrative Manual.  Until recently, purchasing policies were set at the System level.  Please discuss this possibility with Brad.  I already have the formal recommendation from your team related to this (  I am looking for feedback on the idea of separating the existing policy into two.
    7. For the outdoor bin replacement, we have approval from the Architecture Review Committee, the Superintendent of Grounds, and the Campus Landscape Architect to proceed with the dual bins across campus.  Marya Ryan has provided a rough estimate of the funding needed, as approximately $500,000. Ximing and I would appreciate a recommendation from your team in support of implementing this project, seeking funding support from each of the responsible parties (such as Parking, DIA, Campus, and Student Affairs). Because it is a large-scale highly-visible project, it is likely this recommendation would go to the Sustainability Council, which we hope will meet this November.
    8. Finally, I am hoping to start getting regular (at least twice per year) Project Updates in the iCAP Portal for projects with the status “In Progress.”  Is it possible for your SWATeam to help with this effort?  I believe it would be a matter of looking at the iCAP Portal theme page (, clicking expand all, and reviewing the information on each of the twelve “In Progress” projects.  If it doesn’t have a recent update, then someone on your team could reach out to the contact person and get an update to post. 


    Also, for your info, there is a pending recommendation for hiring a full-time Zero Waste Coordinator.  The iCAP Working Group will discuss this at our first meeting this fall.


    Thank you so much for your help with all of this!  Having students, faculty, and staff working together to advance the iCAP has been a wonderful help, and I am eager to work with you this year.  Sorry again for being unable to attend on Monday.


    All my best,




    Ms. Morgan White

    Associate Director of F&S, Sustainability

    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

    148B Physical Plant Service Building, MC-800

    1501 S. Oak, Champaign, IL 61820



  4. PWR012 Purchasing Representation recommendation - Successful

    The iWG co-chairs, Ximing Cai and Morgan White, identified this recommendation as a small-scale reecommendation that did not require a full iWG assessment.  They submitted it directly to the Director of Purchasing, Brad Henson, and met with him to discuss the need for a Purchasing Office representative to actively participate in the Zero Waste discussions for campus sustainability.

    Mr. Henson agreed to assign Associate Director of Purchasing, Aaron Finder, to the SWATeam.  For further updates, visit the SWATeam page at Purchasing, Waste, and Recycling (PWR) SWATeam.

  5. SWATeam Appreciation Letter

  6. PWR013 Zero Waste Coordinator recommendation - Submittal

    The PWR SWATeam submitted a recommendation, to the iWG, stating, "We recommend that a full-time Zero Waste Coordinator is hired."

    See attached the SWATeam recommendation, PWR013 Zero Waste Coordinator, complete with comments from all the PWR SWATeam members.

  7. PWR012 Purchasing Representation recommendation - Submittal

    The PWR SWATeam submitted a recommendation, to the iWG, stating, "A staff member on the University of Illinois Purchasing Division commit to regularly attend the meetings of the Purchasing, Waste, and Recycling SWATeam."

    See attached the SWATeam recommendation, PWR012 Purchasing Representation, complete with comments from all the PWR SWATeam members.

  8. PWR011 SmartWay Union recommendation - Submittal

    The PWR SWATeam submitted a recommendation to the iWG stating, "We recommend that Facilities and Services and the Illini Union become certified as an EPA SmartWay Logistics Company Partner, following the example set by University Housing and Dining Services in 2013."

    See attached the SWATeam recommendation PWR011 SmartWay Union complete with comments from all the PWR SWATeam members.

  9. PWR SWATeam Meeting - 2/5/18

    The PWR SWATeam had their first meeting of the semester, where they discussed several updates related to purchasing, waste, and recycling. The Team discussed concerns about recycling bins on the Main Quad, persistent issues with the purchasing of recycled paper on campus, challenges with a centralized battery recycling program, and the formal adoption of EPEAT standards for electronics on campus. The SWATeam also discussed and provided feedback on a formal recommendation for the expansion of SmartWay to other campus units.

    Attached Files: 
  10. PWR efforts - update from February 2018

    Associated Project(s): 

    Morgan White send an email to the PWR SWATeam on February 4, 2018 saying,


    Hello PWR SWATeam,

    I am sorry I will not be able to attend the meeting on Monday.  Here is a quick update on various efforts underway.

    1.    Leah Berti is starting to present the “Use the Bin” speech for various groups at F&S.  She is also helping us get an online tour request form for the Waste Transfer Station and then she will help actually give the tours this spring.
    2.    Becky Jonas is going to meet with the facilities contact, Tim Prunkard, for the Hydro building and the Newmark Civil Engineering Building.  She will be mapping recycling and waste bins in the building.  She is also creating an updated online survey for the building occupants that she will give them before making changes to the bin locations.  Then Tim, Becky, and I will meet with the BSW supervisor for those facilities, Ramona Burns, and discuss changes we want to make.  
    3.    Linhan Yang is working with Lance Schideman and several other interested people to form a broad solution for keeping food waste out of landfills.
    4.    The SSC is working on getting a visit to the Danville landfill (which is where we send most of our trash) this spring.
    5.    Marya and Anna are creating an online glove recycling sign-up form and a flyer explaining how the glove recycling storage container works.
    6.    Pete Varney and Shaun Patterson have updated the lights and heating at the Waste Transfer Station.  This makes it easier for the workers to pull recycling from the sort line – but remember the first step is for our students, employees, and visitors to use the recycling bins in the first place.  They also will help us with getting more of the new labels.
    7.    Ryan Welch, superintendent of grounds, is reviewing the map of dual bin locations for North of Green Street.  I got pricing info from the first installation of the new-style bin, and it was close to $3,000.  That would be about $165K for north of green new bins, and we need to account for removing the old bins as well.  And that’s just part of campus, so the price of this effort will be significant.  I believe it will be well worth it, if campus can find the funds.
    8.    The feasibility study for the new baler has made it through the approval process and will be starting in February.


  11. PWR SWATeam Meeting - 11/30/17

    The PWR SWATeam reviewed the progress made over the course of the semester on various projects and discussed next steps for each. These projects included battery recycling, the rearrangement of outdoor trash and recycling bins, guidelines for the optimal arrangement of indoor bins, expanding SmartWay, and encouraging the use of EPEAT certified products.

    Attached Files: 
  12. PWR SWATeam Meeting - 11/2/17

    The Purchasing, Waste, and Recycling SWATeam met to discuss a variety of updates and challenges regarding recycling on campus. The group discussed progress on the rearrangement of outdoor dual bins on the North Quad and standards for the placements of bins inside of buildings. The group also discussed their long-term vision for trash and recycling operations on campus and brainstormed various methods for increasing recycling at the Waste Transfer Station. An update was also given on the status of SmartWay certification on campus.

    Attached Files: 


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