Missouri State University is participating in RecycleMania, a national competition between colleges and universities to see who can reduce waste and recycle the most! During February and March, you can help us win RecycleMania by reducing your consumption of disposable goods and recycling everything you can on campus! Join your fellow Bears and make a difference!
Why is it important to reduce, reuse and recycle?
- The EPA estimates that 70% of waste is recyclable, but only 30% is actually recycled.
- Americans send 2.5 million plastic bottles to the landfill every hour.
- Recycling one stack of newspaper just 3 feet high saves an entire tree.
- Recycling one aluminum can saves the amount of energy needed to power a TV for three hours.
- An average person generates 4.5 pounds of waste per day or 1,643 pounds per year!
- The average American produces 90,000 pounds of trash over their lifetime.
How can you help us win RecycleMania?
Reducing waste is an important way to reduce your environmental footprint. The best way to minimize waste is to avoid disposable products altogether. If you DO decide to use new products, try to reduce your usage of them.
Tips to reduce waste:
- Reduce your consumption. Only buy products you absolutely need.
- Buy fresh and organic produce instead of packaged and fast food.
- Eat ALL of your food instead of throwing away leftovers.
- Buy products with less packaging.
- DON’T buy disposable products like plastic bags, plastic bottles, Styrofoam cups, etc…
- Take advantage of the hydration stations on campus instead of buying bottled water.
Many common disposable items can be used more than once OR you can buy durable and reusable versions of them instead!
Tips to reuse:
- Reuse plastic bags and bottles, glass bottles, and even ziplock bags.
- Buy (and USE) reusable bags, travel mugs, cups, and bottles.
- Coffee shops on campus offer a discount when you bring your own mug!
- The campus bookstore sells green reusable bags for only $1.50 each, and they get you 2% off your entire purchase at the bookstore (excludes electronics and books).
- Buy used items and donate your gently-used ones.
- Start a compost pile at home! If you have food scraps leftover from your lunch, take them home and put them in your compost pile. You can then use this as fertilizer for your garden!
- Take advantage of the reusable cup program on campus.
We use comingled recycling bins on campus, which means you can put all recyclable materials in the same bin.
In the paper bins, you can recycle:
- Opened mail & greeting cards
- Office paper, file folders & shredded paper
- Magazines, brochures & catalogs
- Newspapers & inserts (NO BAGS)
- Paperboard boxes & paper bags
- Phonebooks, paper & hard-back books
In the comingled bins, you can recycle:
- #1-7 plastics
- Metal cans
- Clean, balled aluminum foil/pie pans
These items are NOT accepted in the comingled bins:
- Glass or ceramic of any kind**
- Plastic bags
- Scrap metal (dangerous!)
- Foam packing materials
- Plastic microwave trays
- Ice cream containers
- Tissues, paper towels, napkins
- Waxed paper or waxed cardboard
- Containers not rinsed or cleaned of food
Paper can be placed in comingled bins, but please put paper in the paper bins when possible.
**Glass and cardboard CAN be recycled in the residence halls and other specific locations on campus. Learn more about recycling on our Recycling FAQ’s page.
Tips to recycle:
- Schedule a shred event for your office or department during RecycleMania – this paper is recycled!
- Contact Custodial Services to request a pick-up of any large quantities of paper, such as an office clean out.
- Recycle batteries, ink/toner cartridges and other e-waste by scheduling a pick-up.
- Students should look for recycling bins for these items in their residence hall.
- Host a junk mail opt-out event in your office or department.
- Contact Jordan Schanda, Sustainability Coordinator for more info about how to do this.
Please comment below if you have other ideas about how we can reduce waste and increase recycling on campus.
Thank you for doing your part to reduce, reuse and recycle! Go Bears!