Oracle in Pleasanton has been recognized with a 2016 StopWaste Business Efficiency Award for Excellence in recycling and composting.
Oracle Pleasanton's award was one of eight Business Efficiency Awards presented last month by StopWaste, the public agency responsible for reducing waste in Alameda County.
Oracle Pleasanton is currently keeping 90% of its discards out of the landfill, up from 35% only a few years ago, according to StopWaste Executive Director Wendy Sommer.
"In the last 25 years, we've cut the amount of garbage going to landfill in half in Alameda County, in part because of businesses like the ones we are recognizing with these awards," Sommer said.
This wouldn't be possible without Oracle's innovative composting program. It's one of the Pleasanton's first full-scale collections of food scraps and food-soiled paper in an office complex, a service that technically wasn't even available to Pleasanton businesses when Oracle Pleasanton started it as a pilot program in 2013.
"It wasn't an easy task, especially given the size of Oracle's location, a 20-acre campus with 693,000 square feet of building and 1,600 employees," said Tim Roche, Oracle's senior facility manager.
Working with Pleasanton Garbage Service, Roche conducted several waste audits and thoroughly assessed the types of materials generated onsite, including the campus cafeteria, where they switched some food service ware items to compostable items so they could be recovered in the new program.
Oracle set up waste sorting stations in the kitchen and around campus, with custom signage making it easy for staff to understand which materials go where. In addition, each employee station was equipped with receptacles for trash, recycling and organics.
The bottom line: Extensive outreach, employee engagement and custom signage have made the program a huge success. The program has also had an impact on a larger scale: collection
service for compostable materials is now available to businesses on request from Pleasanton Garbage Service.
For more information about the 2016 Stopwaste Business Efficiency Awards visit www.Stopwaste.Org/2016Awards/ and www.stopwaste.org/at-work/