Document Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Science & Environmental Policy


Solid waste management is an important component of environmentally sustainable measures. The generation of solid waste leads to an increased amount of land used for landfills, pollution from transportation and production emissions, and waste water generation. Academic institutions, including universities, generate a great amount of solid waste. The goal of this study was to divert solid waste from the Science Academic Center at California State University Monterey Bay. I tested my hypothesis that recyclables would make up at least thirty percent of the solid waste stream. A preliminary waste audit was conducted that determined recyclables made up 31.3% of the waste stream. This audit was followed by source reduction efforts focused on providing more recycling information and bin accessibility. A post-waste audit was conducted to measure the effectiveness of diversion efforts and results indicated that although the percentage of recyclables in the total trash decreased by 8.8%, this change was not statistically significant. Recommendations for reducing the Science Academic Center's solid waste address additional and alternative recycling bins, changing the location of current bins, decreasing waste pick up, and future campus waste audits.


Capstone Project (B.S.) Division of Science and Environmental Policy

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