Penn ReThinks the Plan for its Waste

November 20, 2013

Penn’s Division of Facilities and Real Estate Services with help from outside consultants, Haley & Aldrich, is currently in the process of implementing a campus-wide Solid Waste Management Plan. The SWMP provides a prioritized list of initiatives to help the University in achieving the Climate Action Plan goals.”  Currently, staff from Penn’s schools, centers, and offices are collaborating as part of a bi-weekly working-group that is developing standard operating procedures (SOPs) for a variety of University waste-management practices.  These SOP areas are considered high-priority items to help streamline the waste management process for all of Penn and currently include the list of topics below.  In addition to these items, more SOPs and initiatives will be developed over the next year to successfully meet the goals of the plan established in FY13.

  • New standards for arranging trash, compost, and recycling containers in clusters to promote ease-of-use
  • New standards for recycling batteries and light bulbs (considered a special form of hazardous “Universal Waste”)
  • Developing new requirements for Penn’s on-campus food vendors to reduce waste generated in their operations
  • Creating standards for events over $1,000 in catering to generate significantly less waste and improve recycling and composting efforts across the University

Details of the new waste management plan, once complete, will be published on the Green Campus Partnership website, and will be featured in future communications.


Penn was presented with the Office Depot Special Recognition Award for the University’s sustainable purchasing practices in 2013.

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