Rules of the game

1. The institution that increases their overall percentage of recycled waste the most, against a baseline of the same period last year – the winner of this category will be the overall prize winner;

2. The institution which has the best recycling rate as a percentage of total waste per capita;

3. The institution that generates the least amount of combined waste and recycling per capita and;

4. The institution that engages the most people during the competition period.

 

ELIGIBILITY OF PARTICIPATION

1. During the 2019 pilot of the programme, participation is by invite only. However, we hope to be able to roll the programme out in future years.

2. Participation in elements of the programme is dependent on your ability to track and report the required information for each of the competition categories.

3. Universities will be asked upon registration to list their institution’s student and staff population. We expect this to be reported as a. Full-time equivalent (FTE) staff for the entire university, including auxiliaries and satellite facilities b. 12-month student enrolment for the 2018-2019 academic year, excluding any distance learners.

 

TIMINGS

4. The competition will be held from 1 October – 30 November 2019.

 

COMPETITION CATEGORIES

5. There will be four categories: a. The institution that increases their overall percentage of recycled waste the most, against a baseline of the same period last year – the winner of this category will be the overall prize winner; b. The institution that generates the least amount of combined waste and recycling per capita; c. The institution that has the best recycling rate as a percentage of total waste per capita; d. The institution that engages the most people during the competition period.

6. Universities are able to be the winner of more than one category with the exception of the overall winner who will not be eligible for the three remaining categories.

 

PRIZES

7. The overall prize-winning university (as outlined in 5.a.) will be granted a prize worth up to £15k. NUS and Coca Cola will liaise with participants across the competition period to define a prize that’s suitable in terms of incentive, engagement, and sustainability.

8. Should universities want enhancement to an existing event as part of their prize, requirements need to be communicated to NUS no later than 1st October 2019.

9. Winners of all categories (as outlined in 5.a-5.d) will be awarded a golden recycling bin including information board about their achievement. Full requirements of bins need to be communicated to NUS no later than 1st October 2019.

 

BASELINES

10. Universities are encouraged to track and report weight data during a two-week “preseason” period immediately preceding the official eight-week competition. Though optional, pre-season reporting is an opportunity for universities to work out the kinks to ensure they’re able to get the necessary data before the official kick-off. Participants’ results will be published in an unofficial ranking, allowing them to see where they will likely be most competitive. This knowledge is important for setting goals and deciding where to focus on outreach efforts.

 

WASTE TRACKING

11. We encourage participants to track their waste by stream where possible and will provide the ability to record the following streams: paper (including confidential paper waste), cardboard, cans, glass, plastic bottles and other plastics waste, coffee cups, food waste, waste for landfill, waste for energy, mixed Fibres (paper and cardboard together as one weight number), mixed recyclables (for example cans and bottles, paper and cardboard all as one weight number), co-mingled waste (including nonrecyclable waste to be separated off-site). Other details can be added but we may not be able to provide comparisons with other universities.

12. Specialist waste including Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), furniture, pallets, construction and maintenance waste, hygiene waste, landscaping and grounds waste, medical waste and hazardous waste is not included in the competition.

13. Waste data must be reported in kilograms.

14. Universities will be able to select the scope of their activities – wherever possible this should be as close to ‘whole institution’ as possible, including any halls of residence. Scope will be signed off in advance by NUS staff. Baseline and reporting throughout the competition period will relate to the same scope on campus, so we’re reporting ‘like for like’, wherever possible.

15. Where possible, universities should use actual waste weights measured with a scale upon collection. Where this is not possible they can use a volume-to-weight formula to estimate the weight. In this case, we ask universities to outline how they’ve ensured the formula they use accurately reflects their actual waste stream. As a last resort, if this is not possible, universities can use the conversion formulas published by WRAP.

16. Regardless of whether using actual weights or a volume to weight conversion formula, the data should be based on the actual measured quantity of materials collected. In other words, if relying on volume to calculate weights, the university should be tracking how full bins actually are when emptied, and base this on empty, full, ¼ full, ½ full, ¾ full and not simply multiply using the capacity of the bin. For example, if a 1100ltr bin/skip is roughly half full when emptied, 550ltr should be used to calculate the weight. Exceptions to this rule include a. Universities that receive weights by monthly (or less frequent) invoice. In this case, use past weekly averages to report placeholder numbers each week. There will be an opportunity to revise reports with actual data throughout the competition. b. Universities that have no way to track data from sections of their campus or facilities may develop a formula to estimate for up to 25% of their total reported weight. NUS staff must approve the methodology in advance.

17. Contamination will be taken into account by removing a percentage of recycling rates from the total figures. The percentage will be calculated by NUS as an average of contamination rates provided by participants as part of their baseline data provision.

18. If monthly (or less frequent) data is received, the weekly total should be calculated on a pro-rata basis, for example, if a monthly waste stream is 1378kg, and there are 31 days in that month, a week’s waste data during that month would be 1378 ÷ 31 x 7 = 311kg.

19. Stockpiling recyclables for the primary purpose of improving competition results is not permitted. Universities may include stored materials such as paper that are purged as part of a normal operational process, or that are collected from individual students and staff as part of a promotional collection activity.

20. A competition week is Monday – Sunday. Participants will report weight data on the tracker website on a weekly basis, providing details of the previous week’s data before 5 pm on Wednesday of each week. Weights submitted after this time of a given week may not be reflected in the updated results until the following week.

21. After 30th November, participants will have until 14th December to provide their final, verified waste data.

 

ENGAGEMENT TRACKING

22. Active engagement figures will be used to calculate the winner of the category as outlined in 5.d. These will include active online engagement (e.g. those who’ve liked, retweeted, shared, etc.) as well as active face-to-face engagement (attendance at events etc.).

23. Engagement figures will be collected by the participating university and their students’ union. Proof of figures will need to be collected (e.g. through screenshots or online analytics data, events attendance lists or ticket sales) and reported through the online tracker on a weekly basis.