The Grafton Green Team is a group of students, staff, and faculty working to affect change, serve as leaders, and promote sustainable behaviors at the Cummings School. For questions or to get involved, contact GraftonGreenTeamAdmin@tufts.edu.
Green Teams lead efforts to implement, and educate the campus community about, environmentally sustainable practices and receive ongoing resources and support from the Office of Sustainability. The program was developed in 2014 as a grassroots effort by a dedicated group of Cummings School students with support from staff Eco–Ambassadors at the Cummings School and the Tufts Office of Sustainability.
Sustainability efforts on the Grafton campus date back to 1990, and for years the group was named Green Grafton.
The Green Team has put together an Eco-Guide for first-year students with information such as where to buy sustainable food, local farmer’s markets, composting, recycling, and more. This guide is useful for all Grafton students who need to know their sustainable living options in the area!
Through the combined efforts of the Cummings Eco-Ambassador group and support of many on campus, a compost program launched on March 23, 2015. This program was an expansion of the great composting already occurring on the Grafton campus, composting all of the farm’s waste. This compost program aims to provide a composting option for any TCSVM students, faculty, and staff to bring their compostable goods from home to campus to be composted.
Unlike on other Tufts campuses, we can not compost any kind of plates, cups, napkins, or other goods labeled as compostable. Also, the compost buckets should not have liners on our campus. The only compostable items for Grafton include food items other than meat and dairy.
We also have compost buckets set up at each lecture hall to collect compostable waste generated during the day. Compost buckets have now also been placed in Elm’s Cafe, in the Foster’s Hospital break-rooms, and at the Foster’s Hospital front desk. We encourage you all to participate!
The compostable goods drop-off location is still conveniently located at the dump truck parked near the Goat Barn 1/Amelia Peabody Pavilion, which will be emptied regularly by farm staff. Information on what can and cannot be composted is posted on the sign by the dump truck.
Registration for the program is free. The only requirement we ask is that you kindly review the Composting Sign and fill out the survey below to register for the program. This will evaluate your basic knowledge of composting on our campus in an effort to minimize compost contamination. Upon your successful completion of the online survey, we will contact you via email to confirm your registration with the program.
Reusable Dishware/Zero-Waste Lunch Talks
Are you hosting a lunch talk? Please encourage members to bring their own reusable dishware and utensils. There is now also reusable dishware located in the SAVMA conference room on the 2nd floor of the Agnes Varis Auditorium building to be provided at the lunch talks by clubs. There is also a plan in place to begin instituting reusable meal and utensil kits for use at the Elm’s Cafe shortly.
There are recycling bins throughout the Grafton campus. All of these bins should have signs on or near them explaining what can and cannot be recycled. Please remember that clear plastic cups can be recycled, but colored ones cannot. Also, always make sure any item being recycled is clean and dry! If you notice any areas without recycling bins or signs, please let Green Team Leader, Lauren Gawel (GraftonGreenTeamAdmin@tufts.edu) know.
The Grafton campus is currently undergoing a pilot program to recycle non-hazardous Nitrile gloves used that would otherwise enter the landfill waste stream in large quantities. This program is through RightCycle in conjunction with Kimberly-Clark.
Grafton Green Team also participates in helping with regular recycling drives with “We Can Reclaim It!” This organization puts on multiple recycling drives throughout the year in which people from Grafton and surrounding towns show up to drop off Styrofoam, electronics, old paint, textiles, and more that they are unable to recycle on their curb-side.
Recycling is important, but reducing and reusing are even more beneficial. On Grafton, we have an annual Clothing Swap. All members of the campus – students, faculty, and staff – are encouraged to participate by bringing unwanted clothing and by coming to the swap and choosing clothes that are new to them!
Grafton Green Team has also begun a Terra-cycle campaign. Silver-lined granola and snack wrappers are collected at the library, and Foster’s Animal Hospital at the front desk, phone bank, and break-rooms. These are then sent to the Terra-cycle facility where they are made into new products!
Finally, the Grafton Green Team puts on or participates in many events throughout the year. Some include community trash clean-ups, Earth Hour, Earth Day, Zero-Waste Week, and Diversity Month.
Interested in Getting Involved?
The Green Team has an email list and is always looking for people to help with projects, volunteer at events, and share sustainability ideas!