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StudCo discusses waste

Proposal would require football fans to compost leftover food, cost $2,300

Student Council introduced an initiative last night which would convert football games into "zero-waste" events. The proposal would include composting all food products as well as implementing compostable concessions containers.

First-year College student Ashley Badesch developed the measure, basing it on a similar program at Colorado University at Boulder.

Badesch described the conversion to eco-friendly food containers as one of the main operational changes in the initiative. Royal Oaks Farm, the same company that currently composts the leftover food from Observatory Hill Dining Hall, would compost the food from football games.

"The compost would just be picked up from the stadium," Badesch said. "Essentially it would make the stadium waste-free and eliminate the need for trash cans."

The program is estimated to cost $2,300. This sum was calculated using the number of concessions sold in the 2010 football season, Badesch said. The athletic department has not yet decided whether it will absorb the costs, try to find corporate sponsorship or not pursue the program based on this estimate.

CU-Boulder's program, titled "Ralphie's Green Stampede," is funded by corporate sponsors, and also includes a stadium-wide green initiative, including reusing fry oil as fuel and installing solar panels.

The athletic department asked Badesch, a Denver native, to develop the proposal based on her familiarity with the CU-Boulder program. She approached Halley Epstein, co-chair of Council's Environmental Sustainability Committee, seeking student support rather than funding.

"There's no monetary commitment on behalf of StudCo," Epstein said. "[The athletic department was] looking for some sort of endorsement."

This program would come in the wake of the Council's GameDay initiative, which earned the University the highest recycling percentage adjusted for student attendance in the ACC, Athletic Affairs Co-Chair Ben Powell said.

"By passing this, there's no guarantee it's going to happen next season," Epstein said. "They have all the data analysis they need, [now] it's just figuring out, is athletics going to cover that [cost] or is one of the their sponsors"


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