School & Campus Sustainable Circular Economies (Part 2 of 3)

School & Campus Sustainable Circular Economies (Part 2 of 3)

Dec 15, 2023

To help achieve increased “value” when implementing Campus Circular Economies, our Campus for GREEN implementation teams focus our efforts strategically around four (4) key pillars of sustainability: Recycling & Sustainability, Education & Engagement, Sustainable & Circular Economy Products, and Giving Back. We have learned that by implementing Circular Economies with a focus on both internal operations & external education, we can significantly increase your value.  

  1. Recycling & Sustainability: Our first pillar is Recycling & Sustainability (R&S). This foundation is focused on minimizing waste and maximizing recycling, towards zero waste goals on campuses. Our approach involves utilizing our CFG Eco Supply Chain Toolkit to implement a broad range of sustainability solutions that impact both internal operations and external education throughout your school and campus. Our primary emphasis is on the environment and cost efficiency. We conduct thorough waste audits, including hands-on assessment, to understand the specific waste items headed to landfills. We then develop and implement strategies to divert these items from the trash stream and integrate them into your campus Circular Economy. This process includes science, compliance, regulatory, and third-party certifications that validate your Circular Economy efforts, ensuring transparent reporting and verifying that your recyclables are indeed recycled and that the sustainable recycled raw materials (SRM) made from your recyclables are being reused back into your campus Circular Economy.
  1. Education & Engagement: The second pillar, equally critical, is Education & Engagement (E&E). E&E initiatives go beyond branding your school as sustainable; they are integral to educating students, faculty, staff, and the community about the 'WHY' behind your campus Circular Economy program. Campus for GREEN education and engagement initiatives are designed to increase recycling rates on campus, promote reuse programs, and enhance the quality of recyclable materials collected across campus. High-quality recyclables are essential for recycling mills and remanufacturers to cost-effectively process your recyclables into a quality sustainable raw material. Our Interactive sustainable educational initiatives also enhance campus involvement by allowing students, faculty, and staff to have a hands-on experience and understand the goals of your sustainability program.

These two pillars work side by side to create a holistic and sustainable approach to campus solid waste management. They support your campus sustainability efforts operationally, including staff training and Return on Investment (ROI) modeling. Education and Engagement initiatives are implemented throughout various aspects of your campus Circular Economy, encompassing recycling bins, signage, campus events, clubs, recycling equipment, campus Recycling Zones, and sustainable school circular economy products created from your campus waste. Additionally, we provide curated Sustainable Curriculum and Workshops tailored to different age groups, in collaboration with students and faculty to design, build, and fully implement your campus Circular Economy program. 

We also incorporate data-driven decision-making, using Campus Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) across both pillars of sustainability to help campuses drive sustainable success. These KPIs include metrics such as recycling and disposal costs, landfill rates, recyclable volumes, Circular Economy performance, carbon offsets, and more. Sustainable Data is an essential component of your Campus Sustainability Circular Economy program. Also, our proprietary 'Learn to Earn' programs enable students to witness the recycling and re-manufacturing processes, promoting recycling and the use of sustainable campus circular economy products. Learn to Earn, coupled with our 'Instant Incentive' platforms provides immediate Rewards Based Incentives that encourage participation and sustainable practices. 

These are the first two pillars, and in the next post, I will delve into the other two, which are equally as important in order to create a start-to-finish Circular Economy.


By Danny Schrager,  CEO at Geared for GREEN