Vanderbilt University commits to achieve zero-waste status by 2030

The university will implement a number of new recommendations to reduce waste. (Courtesy Fotolia)
The university will implement a number of new recommendations to reduce waste. (Courtesy Fotolia)

The university will implement a number of new recommendations to reduce waste. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Vanderbilt University announced Jan. 13 a commitment to reduce its carbon footprint and become more sustainable over the next ten years.

Over the past several months, university administrators, staff, faculty and students have been working to provide recommendations for a long-term strategy to reduce emissions and become carbon-neutral by 2030. Actions included in the plan include ending single-plastic bottle sales by 2025 and expanding food waste collection to include all dining areas and residence halls.

“This plan embodies the triple bottom line: positive social, environmental and economic impact,” Vice Chancellor for Administration Eric Kopstain said in a statement. “Education and research are essential to solving the world’s greatest challenges. We can commit to this goal knowing it is feasible because we remained committed to our mission by carrying out extensive studies and thorough research to establish a vision and plan backed up by data.”

The university has already eliminated plastic straws, provided free reusable water bottles to undergraduate students and begun offering more sustainable printing options.

While Vanderbilt officials said it is not technically possible to be completely waste-free, zero-waste status is typically defined as having a 90% diversion rate from landfills. The university has a 47% diversion rate at present

More on the university's zero waste master plan can be found here.
By Wendy Sturges
A Houston native and graduate of St. Edward's University in Austin, Wendy Sturges has worked as a community journalist covering local government, health care, business and development since 2011. She has worked with Community Impact since 2015 as a reporter and editor and moved to Tennessee in 2019.


Screenshot via
No decision yet on extending Tennessee's stay-at-home order as April 14 deadline approaches

New models show cases could peak by May, but only if social distancing continues.

(Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Tennessee State Board of Education approves emergency rules to amend graduation requirements

A new set of requirements will be put in place for graduating seniors.

Initial claims for unemployment insurance are increasing across the nation in the midst of COVID-19. (Courtesy Adobe Stock) (Courtesy Fotolia)
Tennessee residents have filed nearly 250,000 unemployment claims in past three weeks

The state typically receives fewer than 10,000 new claims in a three-week period.

The new filing deadline for the Hall Tax is July 15. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Tennessee extends Hall Tax deadline to July due to coronavirus

The new filing deadline for the Hall Tax is July 15.

Adele's offers American food in The Gulch. (Dylan Skye Aycock/Community Impact Newspaper)
These Southwest Nashville restaurants are offering takeout Easter brunch and dinner

These local restaurants are offering special Easter menus for takeout and delivery.

Rabbi Joshua Kullock and Metro Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson participated in a Passover tradition April 8 while practicing social distancing guidelines. (Courtesy Metro Nashville)
Nashville Jewish community prepares for Passover amid social distancing

Local religious leaders are urging parishioners to continue social distancing through the holidays.

(Community Impact Newspaper Staff)
ROUNDUP: Coronavirus updates across Metro Nashville

Here are some recent Nashville-area stories readers may have missed.

Human trials for new drugs could begin as soon as later this year. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Vanderbilt University Medical Center working to find COVID-19 treatments

Human trials for new drugs could begin as soon as later this year.

The United Way of Greater Nashville announced April 7 a second round of funding to 27 local nonprofit groups helping individuals and families negatively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. (Lindsay Scott/Community Impact Newspaper)
United Way sends over $500,000 to Tennessee nonprofits

The United Way’s COVID-19 Response Fund, in partnership with Mayor John Cooper’s office and local partners, has raised just over $3.6 million since its inception

Restaurants all over the county are closing or offfering curbside and delivery services. (Alex Hosey/Community Impact Newspaper)
ROUNDUP: 5 coronavirus stories Nashville-area readers may have missed

Here are five coronavirus-related stories readers in the Nashville area should know about.

downtown nashville
Middle Tennessee hospitality coalition creates relief fund for workers amid coronavirus-related closures

The fund will grant up to $1,000 to local hospitality workers and small businesses who are eligible for aid.

The map represents 602 of the 926 cases confirmed coronavirus cases reported to the Metro Nashville Public Health Department as of April 6. (Courtesy Metro Nashville)
Metro Nashville map shows concentrations of coronavirus cases by zip code

According to public health officials, some of the concentrations on the map can be traced to group gatherings.