LU Insider


Category: Sustainability

Composting 101

 Why Compost?

Our food scraps & yard waste account for more than 30% of discards in the landfill. This organic matter is sent to the landfill where it decomposes without oxygen and produces greenhouse gases. But, composting your organic matter can significantly lower your carbon footprint! 

How Do I Start Composting? 

STUDENTS: All residence hall floors have compost buckets that are taken to SLUG by a volunteer. Ask your CA where yours is! 

FACULTY & STAFF: SLUG accepts community compost! You can buy a compost bucket for your home and dump your compost at any time at the garden, located below the Warch Campus center, on the west side of Lawe Street, beside the river. If you are feeling ambitious, you can also create your own compost pile at home. Here’s a great resource where you can learn how: 

SLUG accepts: 

  • Fruits and vegetables 
  • Rinsed eggshells 
  • Grains 
  • Coffee grounds + filters 
  • Tea bags without staples 
  • Newspaper 

SLUG does NOT accept: 

  • Meat, fish, & bones 
  • Dairy products 
  • Fruit/vegetable stickers 
  • Tea bags with staples 
  • Pet waste 
  • Oil & greasy foods 

Green Living

Want to live a greener life and help LU reach our sustainability goals? Here are some ideas you can put into action to make a difference! 

How to Reduce Waste: 

  • Don’t throw away plastic bags; bring them to the Warch Campus Center, Seeley G. Mudd library, or a grocery store to be recycled.  
  • Use reusable water bottles, mugs, and shopping bags whenever possible 
  • Make sure recyclables end up in the recycling bin. Recyclables that are put in the trash end up in the landfill. 

How to Eat Sustainably: 

  • Sign the pledge to participate in LU Meatless Mondays 
  • Buy produce with marks or bruises that is still edible. Grocery stores often throw this produce out. 
  • Compost your food scraps- you can bring them to SLUG or create your own pile! 

How to Conserve Energy & Water: 

  • Turn off and unplug appliances when not being used (hair dryers, coffee makers, phone chargers, etc.) 
  • Make sure lamps are using LED light bulbs. LED light bulbs use less energy and last up to 10 times longer than compact fluorescents 
  • Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth, shaving or washing your hands.  

Campus Race to Zero Waste

From January 31st to March 12th, every time you bring a reusable clamshell or reusable bag for dining at Andrews Commons, you will get a slip to enter yourself into a drawing for $20 in dining credit! Winners will be selected WEEKLY until the end of winter term. Reduce your waste! Reuse items when possible! Recycle properly, rinse it and use the right bin!

Free Reusable Bags

LUCC will be providing all LU students with a free reusable bag. In order to reduce waste on campus, students are encouraged to bring these reusable bags and clamshells when picking up food at the Andrews Commons. Paper and plastic bags will be available upon request; if you forget your reusable bag, please do not hesitate to ask for one.  

In addition, a limited supply of free reusable bags and reusable water bottles will be available in the food pantry (Sabin House) and the Diversity & Intercultural Center (first floor of Memorial Hall). 

Environmental Sustainability & COVID-19

Have concerns about environmental sustainability on campus during the pandemic? Want to learn about living sustainably and being an environmental advocate? Register for Sustainable Lawrence’s virtual panel discussion and film screening on November 1st! Our panelists will include:

  • Gregory Griffin, Director of Student Activities and Greek Life
  • Chloe Armstrong, Assistant Professor of Philosophy
  • Jim Yang, Student Rep from LU Environmental Organization
  • Gillian Buckardt, Student Rep from Greenfire
  • Hailey Johnson, Rising Sands Organics – Cooperative Farm

After the panel, we will be showing “The Human Element”, a documentary that captures the lives of everyday Americans on the front lines of climate change and inspires us to reevaluate our relationship with the natural world.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Reusable clamshells are back!

Reusable clamshells are back on campus! Request a reusable clamshell when picking up food at Andrews Commons and help the environment in the process. All Lawrentians are strongly encouraged to utilize reusable clamshells, reusable bags, and reusable utensils when dining. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a major increase in waste going to landfills. We can work together as a community to counteract that trend! If you would like more information about these reusable resources, contact Lawrence’s Sustainability Fellow (

Funds Available to Students for Sustainability Projects

The Student Sustainability Fund offers competitive grants averaging $2,500 for sustainability projects that may consist of research, internships, volunteer or service projects, class projects, or student group initiatives. Applications for this fund will be accepted through Spring of 2021. Examples of projects include developing educational tools and programs for conservation efforts, researching the feasibility of a campus bike-share program, removal of invasive species on campus, funding for travel to and from an internship, a stipend for internships or service projects, etc. Priority will be given to projects that have a sustainability outcome for the campus or utilize the campus as a living laboratory. 

To be considered for approval, students must complete an application for funds and identify a faculty or staff advisor to help track the progress of the project. Due dates can be found on the Sustainability Lawrence webpage: