Green Initiatives and Recycling AQIP Action Project Team Recommendation to Executive Cabinet

Green Initiatives and Recycling
AQIP Action Project Team
Recommendation to Executive Cabinet
June 2014
AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
1. Goal Statement from Team Charter
The AQIP Green Initiatives & Recycling Action Project Team exists to raise awareness
and increase involvement in a campus sustainability plan to inspire and motivate Mott
Community College (MCC) employees to help use campus resources efficiently,
leverage existing efforts, lower operating costs, and move the College into a
responsible stewardship role. Our goal is to help MCC be recognized as a model
organization in the area of green initiatives -- including recycling -- and for the College to
show strong leadership on environmental issues.
The Team’s hope is that the end result of our work will be a thriving green culture at the
College, one that will benefit the institution, its students and employees, its surrounding
communities, and local natural resources including wildlife, and to generate possible
new business relationships, community collaborations and the creation or connection
to new curricula.
2. Problem Statement
Developing a more economically responsible and ‘greener’ college is more of an
opportunity and challenge than a problem. Fostering a culture that encourages and
promotes green behavior is essential to creating an environment where such behaviors
become the standard or traditional reaction. To create such a culture, it is necessary to
communication of expectations and available resources. While certain departments,
employee and student groups have made some strides to make MCC a ‘green’ college,
the Team found that obstacles exist in three distinct areas:
 Insufficient awareness of current environmental efforts including how faculty,
staff and students can get involved
 No currently explicit institutional goal regarding green initiatives, recycling or
energy conservation
 Green initiatives and recycling not being a stated priority of senior college
leadership to date
 No adoption of an institution-wide plan or set of priorities for resource and
energy conservation
3. Summary of the Current Situation
To begin defining the current landscape of environmentally conscious efforts at MCC,
the AQIP Green Initiatives & Recycling Action Project Team (the ‘Team’) created a
comprehensive inventory of past and current college initiatives and efforts. Highlights
of this inventory (the full inventory is listed in Appendix A) include:
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
 Recent introduction of a college-wide recycling program for paper, plastic and
aluminum cans, and cardboard
 Disposal of hazardous lab, electronic and municipal waste through contracted
 Installation of energy management systems for better monitoring of heating and
cooling systems and electricity usage
 Replacement of standard incandescent light bulbs with LED light bulbs where
 Purchase of electric vehicles for traveling around campus
 Installation of a vegetative roof at Mott Library
In forming the recommendations listed below, the Team also polled the College’s
Leadership Group to determine employees’ awareness, knowledge and use of
current green initiatives and recycling efforts. The results of this poll are listed as
Appendix B. In addition, the Team conducted a site visit to Washtenaw Community
College’s Recycling Center and researched existing recycling policies, procedures,
and statements on the Internet.
4. Focus Areas and Specific Recommendations
The Team sees three main areas for improvement of Green efforts, going forward:
A. Construct a master plan for the future of green and recycling initiatives. Such a plan
would ideally be integrated into Board policy, the College mission statement, and
student and employee group information, then launched and reinforced through
integration into the agendas of existing regular meetings at every group level.
B. Expand efforts to transform waste stream expenses into revenue stream gains; i.e.
“turn trash into cash.” Metals, plastics, paper, wood, and other scrap or packaging
materials should be viewed as College property for sale and not disposal. For this we
can turn to sister colleges in the Michigan 2-year system, as well as other Higher
Education organizations nationally, to emulate best practices taking place at those
institutions while also initiating changes that best utilize our own local resources and
area businesses.
The Team toured the Recycling facilities at Washtenaw Community College and came
away with a wealth of information about items and materials that can be sold rather
than scrapped, earning income rather than being disposal-expense items. These
recycled and resold materials ranged from welding rod stubs to culinary food scraps,
from paints to pallets. We would strongly encourage and support a similar initiative and
facility becoming part of MCC operations.
C. Transform campus culture so that all Green efforts and initiatives are foregrounded
and visibly prioritized, and publicized through every available outlet to students,
employees, and the community. Here, as above, we can gain valuable insight from the
successful efforts put in place at Washtenaw Community College.
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
AQIP Green Initiatives/Recycling Team
Inventory of Current Green and Recycling Initiatives at MCC
Compiled October 2013
Energy Conservation Initiatives
Improved equipment reliability and efficiency through on-going regularly scheduled
maintenance and check-ups, extending the life of these systems.
Installed new, high-efficiency modular pulse boilers.
Installed new, high-efficiency chillers.
Upgraded campus-wide HVAC/R management system to better control and monitor
heating and cooling.
Changed all lighting to high-efficiency electronic ballasts.
Installed timed occupancy sensors in offices, classrooms and rest rooms.
Installed 1.0 gallon per flush (gpf) flush valves on water closets and urinals.
Installed flow restrictors on toilet room faucets.
Installed EMON energy monitoring system to track individual building energy use
which also helps identify energy gaps or drastic changes that might indicate system
Installed additional roof insulation when re-roofing buildings.
Installed double-insulated windows in the Bistro.
Campus exterior lighting systems equipped with night light circuits to reduce
energy use during hours that campus is closed.
Purchased electronic carts for moving staff and supplies around the campus (i.e.,
Public Safety, Facilities, Foundation for MCC, Media Technology).
Purchased new energy-efficient buses used by Athletics and Student Life.
Installation of vegetative roof at the library
Campus-Wide Recycling, Re-Use, and Reduction Efforts & Waste Stream Management
Composting has been an ongoing initiative for many years with the Physical Plant
department using roll-offs and trailers to manage yard waste.
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
Implemented paper recycling in every department and classroom with recycle bins
Recycling stations are strategically located throughout each building in the
hallways (items recycled metal and plastic containers, paper, cardboard).
Use of green friendly products in the management and cleaning of each site by
custodians. Purchased more “green” or environmentally friendly products for
custodial uses (cleaning products) and paper products (toilet paper, paper towel) in
public restrooms/areas.
Printing and Duplicating Department uses 10 percent (10%)
recycled paper.
Print room repurposes back sides of copies and scraps to make recycled scratch
pads for anyone to use.
Purchasing orders remanufactured toners with recycled parts for most of the laser
print cartridges.
College business envelopes are made from recycled paper.
Promotion of Steelcase "Think Chairs" for Faculty/Staff task use. These chairs are
made using recycled content and can be recycled, again and again!
Grade Reports are provided online; reducing paper use as well as saving printing
and mailing costs.
MCC implemented online admissions to encourage online applications and reduced
paper use and handling costs.
WebAdvisor has served as both the place to get our schedule of classes out to
students and to register which saves a significant cost in printing class schedules
and registration forms. A small number of schedules are still printed but there are
a lot fewer being printed or recycled than in past years.
The college catalog was also moved to the online environment resulting in a
substantial reduction in paper use as well as saving nearly $20,000 in printing
costs. Email communications and online filing help reduce paper use and need for
file folders. Over many years this could drastically change space allocation due to
the reduced need for file storage cabinets
“ImageNow” software is being utilized in many departments to scan documents
and reduce copying needs.
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
Many on-campus Xerox machines now have a feature to scan and email documents
versus printing.
(ITS) Education Media Services has recently updated MCC’s smart classrooms. A
timer program has been installed in the Crestron touch panels to automatically
shutdown the system if there is no use for two hours. This will result in saving
electricity and extend the life of projector bulbs and equipment.
A Green Initiatives Team (GRIT) was formed to assist Physical Plant in the
implementation of on-campus recycling and to develop recycling programing and
promotion of green activities and initiatives. They are helping keep the campus
community educated and informed on environmental issues that impact us all. The
MCC Accounting and Human Resources Departments are working towards
providing electronic records instead of printing paper copies. Employees will have
continuous access to records online and the college will realize a cost savings in
paper, toner, and machine and labor costs associated with printing and distribution.
Participates in local environmental programs – Annual Earth Day CelebrationRecycling Challenge, Sponsoring community groups on campus (Flint River Wild
Ones, Flint River Watershed Coalition-Project Green, Sierra Club, Ruth Mott
Foundation Initiatives etc.) uses campus facilities for meetings and educational
Reusable water bottles & coffee mugs and tote bags were distributed as employee
Break rooms were stocked with re-usable utensils, cups, plates, etc.
A comprehensive E-waste of outdated technology has been implemented that
ensure environmental stewardship, as we require a end of life certificate on these
items so they do not end up in some third world country as toxic waste.
As part of the College’s Data Retention Plan, offices are now required to review
documentation on an on-going basis and many files have been secured in
electronic form allowing for paper files to be shred and recycled.
Notebooks, file folders, and other discarded office supplies are collected and made
available “free” to students and others via re-use stations.
Some committees/departments have instituted “paperless” meetings and use such
programs as GoogleDocs, etc.
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
Instructors have implemented online testing, syllabi and course work using
Blackboard. This is significantly reducing paper use to conduct classroom
Inter-Office mail envelopes are re-used college-wide.
Public Safety implemented an annual prescription drug take program that grew to
placement of a drug take back drop off receptacle located outside of Public Safety.
Recycled/sent for proper disposal 610 pounds of Batteries that included: 416 pounds
of wet, non spill able lead acid, 174 pounds of Alkaline, 12 pounds of NiCad, and 8
pounds of lithium (2012 data).
Recycled/sent for proper disposal 228 pounds of non-PCB light Ballasts (2012 data).
Recycled/sent for proper disposal 2200 lamps (bulbs) that included: Florescent,
Compact Fluorescent, Metal Halide, HID, and Projector (2012 data).
Academics & Education Recycling Efforts:
The MCC Technology Division reports that the solvent waste product from the
automotive courses is recycled through Crystal Clean. The solvent is reused in other
industrial applications, such as a machining compound, lubricant, coolant and even
made into asphalt and other items. Our new system of pick-up/delivery has also
resulted in MCC using this petroleum based product 3 to 4 times longer.
Also, used oil and antifreeze from the MCC Automotive program are recycled
through Future Environmental. These materials are recycled into other industrial
products or used in hi-tech, clean burning commercial oil burners.
Several academic areas/divisions utilize Books Without Borders for some book
In the Health Sciences area, gauze and medical supplies that don't get dirty during a
scenario are recycled.
Metal that is used in welding is also reclaimed and helps to offset the cost of
Physical Plant Operations also reclaim scrap metal for sale in the secondary materials
market following appropriate guidelines.
Native Plant garden on campus.
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
MCC Stakeholders Input Sought /Received
Poll of MCC’s Leadership Group at their meeting. Results listed below.
Question #1: Kermit can't sing "It's Not Easy Being Green" at MCC anymore. We're doing a
great job!
TRUE = 12 (57%)
FALSE = 9 (43%)
21 Total Responses
Question #2: How often do you use the recycling bins located in MCC hallways?
Frequently (multiple times per week or more) = 13 (48%)
Infrequently (once per week or less) = 14 (52%)
27 Total Responses
Question #3: In short phrases or sentences, please describe green and recycling practices
your department routinely uses, especially if it's something others may not know about.
24 Total Responses including such items as:
Email signatures – Think Before You Print – “soft campaign” to foster reduction, but
some internal processes still using (requiring) excessive paper.
Technology Division – “See How We’re Green” brochure prepared by dean and
faculty/staff; featured on division main web page.
Facilities and Purchasing reviewing contract stipulations with vendors to identify
potential waste reduction.
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AQIP Team: Green Initiatives & Recycling
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