ENVR 401 Fall 2013

*SUBJECT TO CHANGE*: The MWP has taken a consultation-based position on a proposed and collaborative ENVR 401 Research Course project in fall 2013.


Project Description:

McGill Food and Dining Services (MFDS) has expressed significant interest in modifying its current compost system. Following the results of the 2013 Greenhouse Gas audit of its four primary residence food service locations, it was determined that food waste—post consumer waste, in particular—was the largest contributor to MFDS’ carbon footprint. As a result, MFDS is currently reconsidering its use of the university’s industrial composter (“Big Hannah”) and has begun consulting with Compost Montreal to reduce its GHG emissions. This project aims to build on this research by examining case studies from comparable universities and institutions to develop measures that will better manage composting in MFDS food service locations. The results of this study will help determine MFDS’ course of action and identify a set of “best practices” to increase its food composting potential.

(some) Questions to Consider:

–       What can and can’t be composted by Big Hannah?

–       What benefits can the continued existence of Big Hannah have for MFDS and stakeholders?

–       What other composting initiatives exist in North America that can be applied to MFDS?

–       What are the advantages & disadvantages of a centralized/ on-site composting system?

–       What are the advantages & disadvantages of a company-run compost management system?

–       What are the financial benefits or constraints of a new system?

–       What are the environmental benefits and constraints of a new system?

(some) Potential Outcomes:

–       Cost benefit analysis of current composting alternatives (Big Hannah vs. Compost Montreal)

–       Investigation of new composting systems in comparable institutions.

–       Financial and environmental assessment of potential future composting plan.


McGill Food and Dining Services

  • Oliver de Volpi, Executive Chef, Operations, & Sustainability
  • Lou-Anne Daoust-Filiatrault, 2013 Greenhouse Gas Coordinator


  • Gorilla Composting
    • Contact: David Gray-Donald, David Morris, Sumesh Kapoor
  • MFDS Greenhouse Gas Auditors:
    • Contact: Meghan Bajzath
  • McGill Waste Project
    • Contact: Christian Elliot
  • McGill Food Systems Project
    • Contact: Lou-Anne Daoust-Filiatrault, Noah Margo-Dermer
  • Office of Sustainability
    • Kathleen Ng

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s