Going Green Requires a Holistic Approach
It goes beyond recycling and energy conservation to ensure that every resource is carefully managed and developed across campus.
Our food service provider, Bon Appétit, practices social responsibility. Learn about Bon Appétit's commitment to the environment and community. Among many dining initiatives, "Why Buy Local" underpins the Eat Local Challenge, which is held every year on campus.
Bon Appétit encourages using reusable containers for to-go dining. Purchase a reusable clamshell once and reuse it all year. They even clean it for you!
- The Grounds department takes lawn trimmings and composts them. This effort saves over 240 trips to the landfill and over $10,000 in landfill fees each year.
- The Grounds department also works with Bon Appétit and Jo's Coffee to compost coffee grounds.
- In 2019, Bon Appétit partnered with Grub Tubs to compost food waste in Hunt Hall and South Congress Market. The bins are clearly marked so the university community knows what can and cannot be thrown into them.
- Wild Basin has composting toilets in the main buildings on site. These toilets are low-maintenance organic waste treatment systems that use biological decomposition to convert toilet waste into a small amount of safe, stabilized end-product. They use no water, whereas a normal toilet uses about 2,920 gallons per person, per year.
Single-stream recycling bins are located throughout campus, and are designated as blue or green or have an identifying sticker. Neither plastic bags or pizza boxes can be recycled. DO NOT put trash in the recycling bins. Once the recycling bin contains any mixed trash, it can no longer be recycled.
Batteries and Ink/Toner Cartridges
Ink/toner cartridges and batteries can be sent to a recycling facility for free. Learn how to recycle your used cartridges here.
Batteries can be dropped off at the check-out desk at Munday Library.
Clean and dry styrofoam (no packing peanuts, sorry) can be dropped off in the collection box located in JBWN outside of room 120.
- Collection dates: Every day
- Convenient drop off location in JBWN, outside room 120
- Remove all tape and labels - they will damage the styrofoam shredding machine
- No food cartons
- No packing peanuts
Gray bins are for trash (including anything with food products). Any corn-based or bioplastics go in the gray bins. Watch this video to learn more about what and where you can recycle on campus.
The Office of Information Technology (OIT) ensures sustainability plays a role in every aspect of campus technology. Power management, hardware rotation, computer imaging and technology recycling are the primary ways OIT accomplishes this goal.
OIT explores many power management solutions to increase on-campus energy conservation while maintaining expected, reliable service. OIT also maintains a regular computer replacement cycle to benefit from industry advances in power efficiency.
OIT continually evaluates existing technology to determine its useful life. Each year, OIT provides departments with an analysis of their current tech inventory and recommended replacement cycles. OIT maintains and updates equipment until the end of its useful life.
An estimated 20% of campus technology is retired each year. Still-functioning computers too old to be useful on campus are donated to local school districts and/or nonprofit organizations. OIT partners with local recyclers, and these partners dispose of old technology and the associated hazardous chemicals in an environmentally-responsible manner. These partners are also accredited with industry certifications for the pickup and distribution of e-waste. They deliver IT Asset Disposition, Electronics Recycling, CRT Recycling and Certified Data Destruction for the university while following environmental practices and standards.
Facilities works to reduce the university's energy consumption. Facilities purchases electricity from clean, renewable energy sources from Austin Energy and continually invests to maximize use of existing physical plant and building mechanical systems rather than using unnecessary resources to build new ones. An alliance of over 30 student organizations led by Students for Sustainability and Student Government Organization, the Coalition for Climate Justice has been working with the university administration to take meaningful infrastructural changes to combat the current environmental climate crisis. The main objective is to decrease the university's purchase and consumption of dirty energy.
Most campus buildings are cooled using chilled water that is pumped throughout the campus to reduce pumping costs. A majority of academic buildings and residence halls have web-based heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) control systems that allow monitoring and adjustment from Facilities.
See how 10 St. Edward's University buildings reduced their energy consumption during the university’s participation in Campus Conservation Nationals, the largest electricity reduction competition for colleges and universities around the world.
Water is one of our most precious resources, especially in drought-prone Texas. St. Edward's devotes a significant portion of its resource conservation efforts to water. Existing buildings have been retrofitted with low flow water fixtures, and new buildings must comply with current water efficient plumbing requirements. Xeriscaping or planting predominantly native vegetation with low water requirements is another means to increase water conservation on campus. Visit our blog for news on specific water conservation updates.