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Campus Now

Midsummer Issue (Jul.)



While concern about environmental issues has been growing worldwide, Waseda University has long conducted environmental education and research since 1979.
As an education and research university, how can we contribute to solving environmental problems?
Here we will introduce some of the environmental education and research activities being undertaken at the university.


Potential Power of Environmental Activities"Eco Campus

We will introduce two perspectives of Waseda University's "Eco Campus" activities, "On-campus activities" and "Student activities."

1 On-Campus Activities
1 Environmental Safety Center Activities
Supporting the foundations of environmental activities, an organization to lead the way to an eco-future

Kazuyuki Kuroda
Environmental Safety Center Head, Faculty of Science and Engineering Professor

Environmental Safety Center Constantly Leading the Era

Building No. 55 at Nishi-Waseda Campus, home of the Environmental Safety Center

The Environment Agency was established in Japan in 1971, and liquid waste management and treatment system upkeep has gradually progressed. Later, the Sewerage Law was applicable to universities as well, and from the mid-1970s, liquid waste treatment centers for experimental waste started to be constructed at national universities. Waseda University joined the flow and in 1979 opened the Environmental Safety Center.

It wasn't simply a "liquid waste treatment center" of the era, and was named "Environmental Safety Center" with an eye firmly fixed on a wide range of activities in the future. Also, taking educational viewpoints into consideration, the fact that the center wasn't overseen by the General Affairs Division, but the Academic Affairs Division can also said to be extremely advanced.

Collected waste material is treated by private firms

The main affairs of the Environmental Safety Center are conducting proper management of experimental waste, conducting environmental analysis and monitoring wastewater for environmental safety, effective application of chemical substance management systems, making users environmentally conscious through environmental safety・safety explanatory meetings and e-learning programs, and making safety research activities known universally. The center provides a diverse range of support for environmental safety and safety related education and research.

In 1985, information exchanges relating to the environment and private university waste product issues took place with the inauguration of the "Private University Environmental Safety Council," with the center taking a leading role and taking on administrative and management duties. Currently, 150 universities participate as official members and 60 businesses as supporting members.

What is required is vision and action as the leading university

Wastewater analysis lab

The work of the Environmental Safety Center is linked to all of Waseda University's environmental activities. Without analysis and investigations, experiments can't take place and the effects of environmental safety activities can not be measured. Our activities are directly linked to the universities environmental activities. As the office for Waseda Eco Future, we must set environmental goals and enforcement plans. Furthermore, as internal auditor, we play a large role as the system gathering and dispatching on-campus environmental information.

Explanatory meeting for students conducting experiments

Future topics include improving the content of safety lecture programs aimed at preventing accidents, and running a center that can cope with internationalization. It is not an overstatement to say that we are required to provide vision and action to keep the university at the front in all areas related to the environment such as research and education, campus maintenance, and safety and security. On top of education and research support, analysis operations, and campus experimental waste management operations, I believe it is our mission to take a leading role and aim to create safe and secure campus.

2 Vending Machine Energy Reduction Project

Associate Professor Hiroshi Onoda, who developed the appropriate placement effectiveness evaluation tool

At Waseda University there are many vending machines consuming electricity 24 hours a day. That is where the General Affairs Section of the General Affairs Division, with cooperation from Professor Katsuya Nagata and Associate Professor Hiroshi Oda of the Faculty of Science and Engineering, started the Vending Machine Energy Reduction Project. By using appropriate placement effectiveness evaluation tools designed by Associate Professor Oda, energy consumption of vending machines at Waseda and Nishi-Waseda Campuses was measured and places for installation were investigated. Results showed that there was a lot of waste. To reduce this waste, a method to reduce energy consumption without a drop in sales was proposed to vending machine companies. First of all, turning off lights at night resulted in a 5-10% drop in energy consumption. In order to provide further reduction, the effects of surrounding temperatures and sunlight was studied and a daylight hour lights off system was put in place. Also, we are seeking to bring down the volume and number of vending machines. By undergoing these tasks, there has been a large reduction in energy consumed by vending machines.

Lights Off During Daylight Hours (left) Lights Off 24 Hours (right)

Waseda University's Original Lights Off Sticker

3 Environmental Efficiency of New Buildings

The buildings at Waseda, new buildings in particular, are built with the environment in mind. Even in existing buildings, environmental actions, such as lighting reductions, solar panel installation and changing from fluorescent lights to LED lights, are taking place.

Green Computing System Research and Development Center

This building, as an innovative base centered on IT technology research, is due to be completed in the spring of 2011. Starting with solar energy generation equipment, LED lighting in communal areas, a natural ventilation system, using rainwater as toilet washing water, and ecological blind panels on windows, various innovations are planned.

New Building No.11 at the Waseda Campus

The new Building no.11 at the Waseda Campus, completed in March 2009, is a building with excellent environmental capacity. The upper part of the atrium has a top light allowing the communal area to utilize natural lighting. The stairwell from the first floor has natural ventilation, and by using classroom surplus air-conditioning efficiently, energy consumption reductions have been achieved. With other lighting regulations, annual CO2 output has also been reduced.

The greening of the rooftop of Building no. 101 at Tokorozawa Campus

A Campus in Harmony with Nature (Rooftop and Wall Greening)

At Waseda University, many natural environment preservation activities are taking place, in particular, the greening of rooftops and walls. The planting of greenery on the rooftops of buildings such as Waseda Campus' Building no.8, Okuma Garden House and Tokorozawa Campus' Building no. 101, has contributed to suppressing the heat island effect and reducing CO2 emissions. We are also moving plants from their current positions, and returning them to their original spots after a building has been completed.

The Himalayan Cedar in front of the Okuma Auditorium has been designated as one of "Shinjuku's 30 Green Spots" by Shinjuku Ward, and in 1987, at the lush and green Tokorozawa Campus, a natural environment research laboratory was installed and is conducting natural environment safety activities.

2 Student Activities
1 Thorough rubbish separation and schemes to make the Waseda Festival rubbish-free

A large amount of rubbish occurs at the Waseda Festival every year. Last year a total of 16 tons of rubbish was accumulated. Most of the rubbish accounted for consisted of wood (26%), cardboard boxes (22%) and combustibles (14%). As a countermeasure, rubbish is collected and separated into many types for recycling. Last year, as the result of separating into 9 types of rubbish, a high standard of an 80% recycling rate was achieved. Although it was difficult separating the rubbish, there was a true feeling of achievement and worthiness.

The annual Waseda Festival also provides an opportunity to promote understanding and practical activities to visitors and participating groups in relation to environmental safety. With this as a reason, schemes to produce no rubbish are actively devised. One of those schemes is the eco recipe. Food containers at food and beverage stalls are simplified, and in order to reduce the amount of rubbish, participating groups are called on to simplify their packages.

Waseda Festival 2010 Management Staff Natsuki Mori (School of Commerce 2nd Year)

"We made it easy to understand, even for visitors."

Divided into nine types. (1)combustibles (2)non-combustibles (3)cans (4)bottles (5)plastic bottles (caps and labels also separate) (6)clean paper (7)raw waste (8)chopsticks (9)eco containers

"Checking that rubbish is separated"

Individual checks are conducted to ensure participating groups separate their rubbish properly.

2 Waseda Volunteer Center (WAVOC) Activities

Takashi Sotokawa
Volunteer Center Manager

WAVOC was established with the aim to lead from the front in nurturing human resources to contribute in social activities in the future. Specifically, by offering the keywords "Open Subject" and "Volunteer Project" in hands-on learning and social contribution activities, in the eight years since its inception, more than 100,000 students have taken part.

Students gain technical knowledge in open subjects, and through volunteer projects they deepen their knowledge by travelling between the classroom and actual locations. Students do not just finish with their experiences, the reflect on what they learnt and felt through the volunteer activities, and WAVOC puts effort into relaying these to the community in words.

"Inspiring environmental consciousness with Waseda's large scale sprinkling operations"

At WAVOC, with the aim of inspiring environmental consciousness, every summer we hold "Waseda large scale sprinkling," as one of our Atom Currency activities. When participating in community and environment friendly activities such as carrying your own shopping bag or ordering locally grown and produced products at authorized stores, you can receive the local "atom currency." Student environmental awareness is also raised at events such as Candle Night.

"Picking up rubbish with the Rubbish Ranger"

One project activity WAVOC involves itself with is the rubbish problem in immigrant villages on Borneo Island. This village, built over the sea, receives no government services, and rubbish has accumulated on the nearby coast. That is where students dress up as "Rubbish Ranger"! Children gather and everyone picks up rubbish together. This conveys the importance of creating a clean environment by yourself and inspiring environmental safety activities.

Presentation at the"Global Summit for Ecology"

Students Environmental Activity Management System

Ecoforus Representative Reimi Tomihara (School of Education 5th Year)

At Waseda University, three student organizations take on roles within the campus and cooperate with each other, promoting effective environmental activities. Through planning, "Environment Rodriquez" (student NPO organization) expands community environmental activities, "WELC" (Waseda Environmental Leaders Consortium: one of the organizations conducting projects at the Center for Sustainability and Environment ), as a think tank, expands the technical side of activities in the community, and "ecoforus," which manages rational environmental activities by building networks and dispatching information, are the three organizations whose cooperation, while specialized, provides multi-effect activities. In the future we plan to gradually introduce a "Campus Contact Committee," linking all networks related to the environment, and create a system aimed where the university will become a single body and aim at being an environmentally advanced university.