Document Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Science & Environmental Policy


he California State University, Monterey Bay (CSUMB) presently sends its waste to the landfill through the services of Carmel Marina Corporation (CMC)- a waste management company. As with any other institution, the University is bound by financial constraints. But unlike many institutions, CSUMB is also bound by a vision that integrates environmentally sound practices into its decision process. This capstone examined the costs of CSUMB's current practice of land filling its waste and the potential cost of composting it. Using a cost-effectiveness analysis, this study surveyed Universities that presently compost their organic waste at an on-site facility and compared their total cost per ton to the cost per ton of landfilling waste. Two cost-effectiveness analyses were used to compare the methods of waste disposal: a private cost analysis and a social cost analysis. The private cost analysis concluded that three Universities- Pennsylvania State University, University of Wisconsin: River Falls, and New Mexico State University- currently have established composting sites that are more cost-effective than the services that CMC provides through its present waste management contract with CSUMB. The social cost analysis, which considered both the private costs and the cost society as a whole bears, concluded that the three previously mentioned Universities, Dartmouth College, and Middlebury College have composting systems established that are more cost-effective than CSUMB's present means of land filling through the services CMC.


Capstone Project (B.S.) Earth Systems Science & Policy Institute

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