2022 SU General Election Full Supplement

Photo by Scott Strasser

RSA approves funding for residence compost project

By Scott Strasser, March 7 2017 —

Two University of Calgary residence buildings will be a little greener, after the Students’ Union and the Residence Students’ Association approved plans to roll out residence compost pilot projects in Cascade Hall and Olympus Hall in Fall 2017.

The RSA approved a compost pilot project in Olympus Hall at their last council meeting before reading week. The $11,121 to fund the project will come from the RSA’s alumni trust fund.

The funding approval means that Olympus Hall and Cascade Hall will both have compost pilot projects implemented in the fall. The SU approved $11,121 for a Cascade Hall compost project in January, with the funding coming from the SU’s sustainability fund.


Three U of C residences will have composting next year // Photo by Justin Quaintance

The two buildings will join Crowsnest Hall as residence buildings at the U of C with composting. The funding for Crowsnest Hall’s program came from a Quality Money application by the Graduate Students’ Association last year. 

SU vice-president operations and finance Branden Cave started the initiative to improve composting in residence buildings as a platform point for his SU election campaign last year.

“I saw the success we had with the GSA and as a residence student for four years, I saw the need for something like this — to divert that waste from the landfill,” Cave said.

According to Cave, RSA vice-president apartments Adam Mitton reached out to the SU over the summer to team up on the initiative.

“We assembled a team from waste management, facilities, the sustainability resource centre and the office of sustainability to look into this project and see how feasible it was,” Cave said. “We got to the point where we had a plan and all the action items we needed to do. We just needed the funding.”

Each room in the two buildings will receive individual tote bins and two compostable bags per week. The two residences will each have a large 65-litre bin that will be emptied three times per week. The RSA also plans to work with the university to educate residence students on how to compost properly and why it’s important.

Third-year psychology student Zoha Khawaja lives in Cascade Hall. She said she approves of the initiative, as the city will increase landfill fees for loads containing compostable matter by the fall of 2018.

“By imposing this compost pilot project now, it will give an advantage to the university and those living on residence the time to understand how this program can be used and perhaps make further adjustments if needed in the future,” she said.

Mitton said the initiative shows the RSA and the SU are devoted to sustainability initiatives.

“It’s diverting compost from the landfill, but more importantly, educating students in residence on composting,” Mitton said. “A lot of people don’t know how to compost properly and that’s the way of the future. Everyone in Calgary will have to compost. It’s good people are getting that education while they’re in residence.”


Hiring | Staff | Advertising | Contact | PDF version | Archive | Volunteer | SU

The Gauntlet