Minutes of the Environmental Advisory Committee

EAC meetings are open to the public. Minutes are published online after being approved by the committee members. Contact the committee chair with any questions.

February 27th, 2003

  • Time: 3:15 pm
  • Present: Hannah Chapin, Joel Weisberg, Dennis Easely, Richard Strong, Jamie Long, Wayne Beierman, Julie Klassen
  • Absent: Chuk Kittredge, Norm Vig
  • Secretary: Alyssa Thomas
  • Keywords: EAC, minutes

1) Composting Update

  • Long update the committee on the status of composting in the dining hall
  • A few more accurate numbers are still needed: hauling, storage containers
  • Once these numbers are determined, there will be a fairly accurate idea of the cost of composting with a local farm partnership
  • Lots more info is needed on an on-campus system
  • Possible legal issues are being examined—the waste issue (need to meet certain standards)
  • SOPE and facilities need to make a few more calls
  • The current 1st priority is finding a local farm to be a partner
  • Need to look into any local composting companies/co-ops that would buy the compost generated
  • SOPE and farmhouse students will meet with Mary Savina and David Hougen-Eitzman during the 1st week of next term
  • There was discussion on why the composting system worked in a Dakota county school
  • Easely noted that Dakota County’s policies are much more favorable (less $$ tipping fee) vs. Rice County where landfills are the preferred method of disposal
  • It may still be worthwhile to talk to the schools next term
  • There was discussion on the food waste issue—why there was so much and how the amount could be reduced
  • It seems that self-serve is more wasteful than given portions (which was surprising)
  • Along with the composting system could be an awareness raising campaign
  • Chapin tentatively volunteered to do a survey on food waste next term
  • Long stated that the ideal would be to make a recommendation at the end of spring term, and the system would start next fall
  • The committee agreed this made a lot of sense

2) Tree Free Update/Discussion

  • Thomas reported back on the results of the paper use surveys sent out
  • In all there were only 15 departments/offices that responded (some sent back the survey anonymously)
  • All but two of the responders said they just used whatever paper central services sent them
  • Most seemed willing to use recycled paper if it didn’t jam the machines (like it had in the past, presumably the 100%)
  • There were several comments on the color of the paper—it wasn’t white enough for some people
  • The committee recommended that the standard paper be the recycled paper with the highest content that won’t jam
  • This should be the standard for departments, labs, public copiers, etc…
  • If a particular department wants another type of paper, they will have to specifically request it
  • Thomas will try to find numbers about what is saved by using recycled paper, and use these numbers in the recommendation write-up
  • The bookstore doesn’t have recycled options
  • A SOPE student will work on this next term
  • The question was raised if you can print on both sides of the paper everywhere on campus
  • There was much discussion over a paper/print tax
  • Other colleges have systems where there is a charge to print—a tax on paper use (Dean Kelly likes this idea)
  • There were differing ideas on how and if this should be implemented at Carleton College
  • The idea was brought up that this would make a perfect senior ENTS capstone project for someone to do next term

3) Vending machines

  • The committee unanimously passed the recommendation to turn off the lights in the coke vending machines, which saves $25/machine/year


4) How to make recommendations public

  • Since time was short there was very limited discussion on this
  • The committee did agree that our recommendations should be made public
  • There were three ways suggested: Currently at Carleton (which has plans to go electronic!), the Carletonian (Long will ask about this) and the NNB


This is the last meeting of the term. Meetings will resume again spring term.