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November13,2015

MaryBethMcGrew,Chair
UCSustainabilityCommittee
Cincinnati,OH45219
DearChairMcGrew,
AschairofthesteeringcommitteeatPACESyouknowthattheUniversityofCincinnati
mustworktowardsasustainablefuture.Youalsoknowthattheprocessofsecuring
fundsthatgotowardssustainabilityinitiativesisnoteasy.Forthisreason,tobefeasible
asustainabilityinitiativemustalsobecheapandeasytoimplement.
Tothisend,alongwithJohnJohnson,HeadoftheGreenInitiativeattheCincinnatiZoo
andBotanicalGarden,Ihavedevisedthreesolutionsthatarenotonlylowcost,butwill
reduceUCswasteandcarbonfootprint.Asyoureadthroughthisproposalyouwillnote
thateachsolutionhascostinmind.
Thankyouforconsideringthisproposal.Pleasecontactmeatmaierjm@mail.uc.eduor
(513)5202830ifyouhaveanyquestions.
Sincerely,
MasonMaier
ConcernedStudent

Making UC More Efficient

Prepared for
President's Advisory Council on Environment & Sustainability
University of Cincinnati
Cincinnati, Ohio

by
Mason Maier
University of Cincinnati

November 4, 2015

Table of Contents
Informative Abstract i
Introduction

Paper Usage

Problem 1
Solution 2

Waste Management 2
Problem 2
Solution 3

Electric Vehicles
Problem 4
Solution 4

Conclusion

References

InformativeAbstract
ThefollowingdocumentsuggeststhreesolutionsthataddresstheUniversityof
Cincinnatissustainabilitychallenges.Thefirstsolutioncreatesanewpaperusagepolicy
thatseekstoreducestudentpaperusageby10%ofcurrentusageby2026.Thesecond
solutionincludesplacingnewrecyclingbinsineveryclassroomoncampustoencourage
properdisposalofrecyclablematerials.Thethirdsolutionincludesreducingcarbon
emissionsbyreplacingthecurrentNightRidevehicleswithelectricalternatives.

Introduction
OverthepastdecadePACEShasworkedwiththeUniversityofCincinnatiwiththegoal
ofreducingitscarbonfootprintandwaste.In2009acompleteclimateactionplanwas
publishedthatoutlinedtheproblemsfacingUCsustainability.Theproposaloutlined
UCsenergyusageanddetailedparticularproblemareasthathavecontributedthemost
togreenhousegasemissions.Aseriesofsolutionswereprovidedineachproblemarea
includingtransportation,wastemanagement,poweranddistribution,grounds,and
campusbehavior.Finally,acomprehensivegreenhousegasemissionsmitigationstrategy
wasdiscussed.Inadditiontothisproposal,PACEShasalsoconductedacarbon
inventoryeverytwoyearssince2008.1

WhiletheClimateActionPlanwashighlyinfluentialinencouragingtheadoptionof
sustainablepolicies,certainissueswerenotdealtwith.Thismightbeduetothecostof
proposalsandthedifficultyinimplementingthem.Thepurposeofthisdocumentisto
proposethreefeasibleplansthatdealwithoverlookedareasthatcouldpromotea
sustainableUC.

Thefirstplaninvolvesinstitutinganewpaperusagepolicy.Thesecondensuresthat
recyclingbinswillbeplacedineveryclassroomatUC.Thethirdreducescarbon
emissionsbyreplacingsomeUCvehicleswiththeirelectricequivalents.

PaperUsage
Problem
UCssustainabilityissuesarenotlimitedtogreenhousegasemissions.Waste
managementcontinuestobeanissueeventhoughtotalwastehasdecreasedby63%over
thepastfiveyears,largelyduetorecyclinginitiatives2.Despitetheavailabilityofdigital
communicationtechnologiesandresourcessuchasBlackBoard,manyinstructorsstill
requirestudentstousepapercopiesorprovidecoursematerialsthroughpapercopies.In
fact,specialprintingstationshavebeensetupinLangsamLibrarybecausesomany
studentsusethecomputersexclusivelytoprintmaterialforclass.Printedmaterialis
expensive.Theuniversityvalueseachprintasbeingworth$0.10andawardseach
studentwith150freepagesprintedpersemester.Atatotalenrollmentof44,233
students,thisamountsto$663,495persemesteror$1,326,990peryearspentonprints
forstudents3.

Solution
Onewaytoreducewasteistolimittheamountofpaperthatcanbeusedinthefirst
place.Giventhatpapercopiesofmanyassignmentsandsyllabiareunnecessary,a
reductionintheamountoffreeprintsgiventostudentsshouldbeattainable.Reducing
theamountofpaperwasteisactuallyquitesimple.TheUniversityofCincinnatican
adoptanewpolicy,enactedbythepresidentofUC,whichphasesoutfreeprintsgivento
studentsto10%ofthecurrentallotmentby2026.Simultaneously,facultyandstaffwill
beinformedofthischangeandencouragedtoutilizecurrentcommunicationstoolssuch
asBlackBoardmoreextensively.Thisisasimplechangethatwillsavetheuniversity
over$1,000,000yearlyandreduceitscontributiontopaperwaste.

WasteDisposal
Problem
SomebuildingsandroomsatUChaverecyclingbins,whileothersdonot.Whenthere
isntarecyclingbinnearby,astudentwill,morethanlikely,throwtheirpaperintoatrash
binwhereitwillendupinalandfill.Additionally,somestudentsbringcansorbottles
intoclassrooms,butfindthatthereisnotarecyclingbinforthemtouse.Byadding
recyclingbinsineveryclassroomatUCtotalwastewillbereduced.

Solution
Theuniversitycanpurchasesmallrecyclingbinsfrommanufacturersorretailers.UCs
largesizeandresourcesenablethefeasibilityofthisplan.UCwillbeabletonegotiatea
lowerpriceperbinwithmanufacturersorretailersbecauseofthesizeoftheorder.Bins
sellforanaverageof$13perbinatmanufacturerssuchasGlobalIndustries4.Atatotal
ofXclassrooms,itwouldonlycost$Xtoplacenewrecyclingbinsinclassroomsthat
donthaveone.ThisplanwoulddecreasewasteacrosstheentireUniversity.

ElectricVehicles

Problem
Despitethegrowingavailabilityofelectricvehicles,UCsvehiclefleetreliesprimarily
ongasvehicles.UCownsanumberoffuelinefficientpickuptrucksandstudent
transportvehiclesincludingtheshuttlebusesandNightRide.Whileitwouldbeidealto
replaceallUCvehicleswithelectricalternatives,itisnotfeasibleatthistimebecauseof
limitedavailabilityofheavydutyelectricvehicles.Despitethis,somevehicleswithin
UCsfleetcanbereplacedwiththeirelectricequivalents.

TheUCNightRideprogramisoneareathatallowsafeasiblesolutiontobeenacted.UC
NightRideiscomprisedof10DodgeCaravans5.TheDodgeCaravangetsanaverageof
17citymilespergallon6.17mpgisrelativelypoorfuelefficiency,especiallysince
NightRideisusedprimarilyaroundcampus,whenitisapttobetheleastfuelefficientit
canbe.

Solution
NightRidevehiclescouldbereplacedbyanelectricalternativeliketheNissanLeaf.The
NissanLeafhasanMSRPfrom$21,510andMPGeof126city7.Whiletherewouldbea
largestartupcostinitiallyof$215,100toreplacealltenNightRidevehicles,thecost
couldbemadeupovertime,duethereducedfuelcosts.Additionally,thisisoneway
thatUCcandemonstrateitsleadershipintheareaofsustainabletechnologies.

Conclusion
Itisofutmostimportancethatactionistakenregardingsustainability.TheUC
communityneedssustainabilityproposalsthatarebotheffectiveandpragmaticsothat
theycangainwideapprovalfromtheUCcommunity.

Theproposalsthatwehaveoutlinedwillnotonlyreducecarbonemissionsandwaste,but
theywillalsobeextremelycosteffective,andinsomecasestheywillactuallysavethe

universitymoney.FeasiblesolutionsareneededtokeepUConthepathtowards
sustainability.

References
1.ClimateActionPlan.Rep.Cincinnati:UofCincinnati,2008.Web.16Nov.2016.
<https://www.uc.edu/content/dam/uc/af/pdc/sustainability/docs/2009%20CAP%20Master
%20PDF%20(22mb).pdf>.

2."UCFacts."UniversityofCincinnati.N.p.,n.d.Web.16Nov.2015.
<https://www.uc.edu/about/ucfactsheet.html>.

3."RecyclingandWaste."UniversityofCincinnati,n.d.Web.16Nov.2016.
<https://www.uc.edu/af/pdc/sustainability/campus_initiatives/recycling_and_waste.html>
.
4."RecyclingBin18Gallon."GlobalIndustrial.N.p.,n.d.Web.16Nov.2015.
<http://www.globalindustrial.com/p/outdoorgroundsmaintenance/garbage
recycling/containersrecycling/recyclingtote18gallon?
infoParam.campaignId=T9F&gclid=CPXYtoaklckCFZGMaQodQSkHDg>.
5."2015DodgeGrandCaravanAmericanValuePackage3.6LV6FFV6speed
AutomaticMPG."Edmunds.N.p.,n.d.Web.16Nov.2015.
<http://www.edmunds.com/dodge/grandcaravan/2015/st200704870/mpg/>.
6."NightRide."UniversityofCincinnati,n.d.Web.16Nov.2015.
<https://www.uc.edu/publicsafety/stayingsafe/nightride.html>.
7."2016NissanLEAFElectricCarSpecs."NissanUSA,n.d.Web.16Nov.2015.
<http://www.nissanusa.com/electriccars/leaf/versionsspecs/>