Zero Waste Events
What is a Zero Waste Event?
UPDATE June 2021: The Zero Waste Events Program will provide free compostable disposables only to student-led (not staff/faculty-led) events in FY22. We continue to provide compost collection service, boxes and liners, and signage and technical support to events led by any U-M community member.
A zero waste event aims to reduce waste, recycle and compost as much as possible to divert waste from the landfill. Zero waste events are an important contribution to U-M’s waste reduction goal. Our assistance is primarily related to composting, but we highly encourage waste reduction and use of reusables as part of your event planning.
Your Zero Waste Commitment
If you are hosting a zero waste event on campus and receiving support from OCS, you are expected to:
- Communicate with your food provider your goal to go zero waste (e.g. no excess packaging, bulk options where possible, etc).
- Have a plan to prevent contamination in your compost collection.
- Let attendees what and where to compost.
- Set up compost collection boxes and ensure the bags of compost are placed into compost carts for pick-up following your event.
We have resources to help you with these steps below or you are welcome to email us for assistance.
How We Can Support You
The Zero Waste Events Program provides technical assistance and resources to departments and groups for on-campus events. We provide and arrange for:
- Assistance identifying compostable tableware, such as plates, cups and utensils
- Compost collection boxes and liners
- Compost service the day of your event (if the building doesn’t already have regular compost service). Just give us a week’s notice!
If you haven’t hosted a zero waste event before (or need a refresher), email firstname.lastname@example.org to have a member of our staff give you and your group a short training.