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by CJ Ghanny

On October 10, 2015, Tufts University participated for the first time in the GameDay Challenge. The GameDay Challenge is a national, joint initiative by Keep America Beautiful, RecycleMania, the College and University Recycling Coalition, and EPA Wastewise with one goal in mind: to pit universities against each other to see who can have the best waste diversion at athletic games. For our Homecoming game, we competed against Bowdoin University (our rival in the NESCAC), schools in our NCAA Division, and schools in other Divisions all across the country. Here’s how we ranked:

Tufts University Results

Competition Results

Overall diversion rate: 83.871%! (Wow!) #6 diversion rate (All Divisions) (83.871%)! and #1 diversion rate in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC)
Organics reduction: 2,150 pounds

Organics reduction per capita: 0.361 pounds/person

#1 organics reduction per capita (Divisions II and III)
Recycling diversion: 450 pounds

Recycling per capita: 0.437 pounds/person

#2 recycling per capita (Divisions II and III)
Greenhouse Gas Reduction per capita: 0.000175 MTCO2E/person #6 greenhouse gas reduction per capita (Divisions II and III)
Waste minimization per capita: 0.521 pounds/person #9 waste minimization per capita (Divisions II and III)

Not too shabby for our first time at the rodeo! Our participation in the GameDay Challenge reaffirms our commitment to waste diversion at events; Homecoming was only one of thirteen (13) zero waste events held during fall semester 2015. Ranking in the top 10 for overall diversion rate, among other schools large and small with established waste diversion programs, is a sign to us that our program is both successful and effective! We are excited to keep working with all stakeholders to make events even more sustainable as time goes on.

Many thanks to Betsy Isenstein for coordination and supervision; the TuftsRecycles! crew (Savannah, Clayton, Melanie, Tushar, Anna, Adrian, Sofia, Mahlet, Shauna, and Dave) for slogging through literal tons of bottles and bean dip; Lisa Tiberi-Dawley and Bobby Reppucci in Facilities Services for event coordination; and Grounds Support under Jesse Carreiro for event setup.

See you next fall, and bring your A-Game!


TuftsRecycles! intern Clayton manning the recycling station at Homecoming 2015.


Full compost toters queued for pickup outside South Hall.