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Going Green

Facilities Management Division


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University Waste Minimisation and Management Programme - WMMP

The Waste Minimisation & Management Programme (WMMP) has been developed to provide a basis for good practice, environmental responsibility, and methods for waste reduction and diversion on campus. The programme supports a holistic and integrated management approach, for which the reduction of waste generation and its environmental impacts are key. The University is committed to implementing and promoting waste minimisation practices and behaviour amongst the University and wider community.

The Vice Chancellor and AVC Operations have approved the release and implementation of the programme.

University of Waikato RideLink Programme

Initiated by the Facilities Management Division and UniSafe, RideLink is a web-based programme that matches staff and students for regular ridesharing/car pooling or one-off trips. Created by our own ITS staff, the software searches daily for matches among rides submitted by registrants. RideLink was launched in May 2003 and also provides preferential parking in Gates 1 and 10.

University Waste Audits

Baseline data on University rubbish was collected on a subset of bins throughout 2002 and again in 2007. Comprehensive waste audits were conducted in 2011 and 2012 on organic waste and recycling.  We endeavour to conduct waste audits annually.  The data allows the University to gauge its progress in recycling and reducing waste over time.

Waste audits on campus have revealed that 69% of waste to landfill is either recyclable or compostable.  Our Waste Minimisation and Management Plan, currently under development, will assist identify areas of priority.

A large worm farm called 'The Faculty of Worms' has been established behind Oranga, and will contend with 4 tonnes of organic waste each year. If the system is successful, we will look at establishing further organic waste reduction approaches.

Why focus on organic waste? It is this component in the rubbish that causes methane and carbon dioxide to be produced by bacteria decomposing the matter in landfills. Greenhouse gases can continue to be produced from landfills for 30 years.

Initiatives to Improve the Campus Environment (ICE) Award

This award was established by the Vice Chancellor in 1999 to encourage initiatives to improve the quality of the campus environment.  The ICE Award has gone to initiatives ranging from campus paper recycling to more environmentally-friendly laboratory procedures to landscaping a campus crèche to improve outdoor learning opportunities.  The awards are not being held at the moment and are awaiting a budget allocation.

Energy Conservation

The University of Waikato is fortunate to have a part-time Energy Manager to champion energy efficiency on campus. Initiatives thus far include but are not limited to: Upgrading campus infrastructure from light bulbs/fixtures to plant equipment, developing policies to promote energy efficiency, enacting education and awareness campaigns/training, establishing energy monitoring devices, and engaging in peer review processes.


There are currently 11 external recycling stations on campus. These take glass bottles, plastics 1 & 2, cans and aluminium. More recently, tin cans are able to be taken, but must be rinsed clean before placing in stations.  It is important to only put the correct recyclables in each bin, as mixing waste can contaminate the recyclables, which are likely to be dumped to landfill, rather than be reused.

New indoor recycling stations have been established in; Law, L Block, S Block, TEMS, WMS, FASS, Pathways and FoE.  These locations have been chosen due to current cleaner and caretaker availability to manage the stations.

Audits have shown, that just 5 indoor recycling stations alone divert 12-15 bags of recyclables a week.

We monitor and measure our; waste, air and fleet car travel, water and energy use and carbon emissions.  Our proposed Sustainability Plan will set KPI's to endeavour to reduce our footprint.

Last year (2013) we recycled 33 tonnes of paper, 10 tonnes of cardboard, 48 tonnes of glass, and 174 computers were refurbished and gifted to schools.

To reduce some of our waste, we list usable items on No Throw, an online waste exchange site, where unwanted items are gifted. Anyone can join and list for free

Recycling boxes for paper are in all lecture theatres. All offices should have recycling boxes for paper. If you have not got one please email the porters or Jayne Bentley

Be assured that our collected recyclables are actually recycled. They are collected by Gracelands Trust and taken to Hamilton for sorting. They are then transported to Tauranga and baled for China by Transpacific Waste Management.

Environmental Management System (EMS)

We monitor and measure our; waste, air and fleet car travel, water and energy use and carbon emissions.  Our Sustainability Plan wills et KPI's to endeavour to reduce our footprint.