West Chester University has been recycling for nearly 20 years, but the best is yet to come!

The Recycling Program is evolving due to a change in attitude and awareness by the University community. Every day, students and staff are asking us how they can recycle even more. Now we’re introducing a program that meets the challenge of today.

WCU has the potential to do much more and to put ourselves on the cutting edge of environmental initiatives throughout the country. Our new program makes this goal achievable.

Please assist the recycling effort by not depositing trash of any sort in the blue recycling containers.

  • The WCU Recycling Process and Rationale (FAQ)
      • What is "All-in-One" Recycling?

        Welcome to a whole new era of recycling. Now it’s even simpler and more effective than ever. With “All-in-One” Recycling one blue recycling container does it all. All acceptable recyclables (clean paper, cardboard, glass, plastic, aluminum, and food cans) can be mixed together and placed in one recycling container. Please rinse the cans and bottles before recycling.

      • What are the benefits of WCU's Recycling Program?

        Recycling has many benefits. By reducing and recycling we lessen our impact on the Earth. We all want to do what we can to protect the environment.

        Besides the environmental benefit of reducing the amount of garbage we send to the landfill, we also save WCU money. The cost is exorbitant to bury otherwise valuable resources.

      • How does "All-in-One" Recycling work?

        The blue “All-in-One Recycling” container will be readily available on just about every floor of every campus building, including classrooms and deskside containers in offices. All you do is drop all your recyclable items in the nearest container--and we do the rest. It's that simple!

        Non-recyclable items, such as food waste, should be disposed of in waste containers.

      • What items are acceptable to recycle?

        Almost anything that's not soiled or food waste, including:


        • Mixed office paper
        • Colored paper
        • File or manila folders
        • Paper grocery bags
        • Envelopes
        • Pamphlets & Magazines
        • Newspapers & inserts
        • Junk mail
        • Paperback books
        • Phone books
        • Catalogs
        • Cardboard (flattened)
        • Boxboard (cereal boxes)
        • Glass bottles & jars
        • Plastics #1-7 (No Styrofoam)
        • Aluminum cans
        • Aerosol cans (empty)
        • Food cans (rinsed)

        Not Permitted

        • NO GARBAGE
        • No Styrofoam packing materials
        • No restroom or kitchen waste
        • No metal or plastic binders
        • No waxed paper
        • No plastic bags or bubble wrap
        • No air freight envelopes
        • No food-tainted items
        • No used paper plates or napkins
        • No greasy pizza boxes
        • No polystyrene cups or plates
        • No motor oil bottles
        • No hazardous chemical containers
        • No electronics or batteries
        • No compact discs or DVD's
        • No ice cream cartons
        • No foam egg cartons
        • No light bulbs
        • No clothes hangers
        • No yard waste
        • No toner cartridges
        • Hardback books must have covers removed

        Please assist the recycling effort by not depositing trash of any sort in the blue recycling containers.

      • What is the procedure of recycling?
        1. A blue "All-in-One" recycling container for all recyclables (clean paper, cardboard, glass, plastic, aluminum, and food cans) will be widely available on most floors of campus buildings (as well as in most classrooms) for the collection of all recycled items.
        2. Small, blue recycling containers will be provided beside the desk of faculty and staff for the recycling of cans and bottles as well as office paper. Larger containers for the collection of office paper as well as cans and bottles will be provided in copy rooms and computer labs, and in the lobbies of each residence hall floor.
        3. No source separation is necessary—all recyclables can go in the deskside container using the small blue containers provided. Just make sure that any non-recyclable items (such as food waste) go in the waste container rather than in the recycling container. Custodial staff will continue to pick up the recycled items from residence hall floors, copy rooms, computer labs, and at each person’s desk as well as from the classrooms and hallways of each building.
        4. The Custodial staff will collect the recycled items from building containers and carry it to a centrally-located recycling container. From there it will be picked up and delivered to a recycling processing center.
        5. Smaller pieces of cardboard can go in the recycling containers with the rest of the recycled items. Large cardboard boxes should be flattened and left next to the blue recycling containers so that the custodians can pick them up. Plastic wrapping and Styrofoam should first be removed from the boxes and discarded as trash.
        6. Used toner cartridges can no longer be processed through the recycling program. Departments can recycle these items by sending them back to the manufacturer via the return mailing label enclosed in the original box.
        7. Campus departments with extra large volumes of recycled files and papers should contact Custodial Services via a Work Request to provide assistance with the clean-out process (special containers may be provided to simplify the clean-out process). Moving Services should be contacted for Confidential Paper only.
        8. Departments should arrange to the have the covers of hardback books removed before placing them in the recycling stream.
      • What about confidential papers that need to be shredded?

        If your office generates a large amount of confidential paper you may request, via Work Request to Moving Services, that a special, lockable Toter be placed in your office to accumulate the confidential paper. This paper requires special handling, and the Moving Services Supervisor will arrange for this paper to be destroyed by a certified shredding service.

      • What if we need more small, blue recycling containers for deskside use in our department?

        If you need more deskside containers, please submit a Work Request to Moving Services (Support Services).

      • What does this mean for me?

        WCU’s "All-in-One" Recycling asks people to rethink the way they consume and dispose of materials. The best way to do that is to have the generator of the material be directly responsible for its disposal. By taking responsibility for the waste material you generate, it's hoped that you will ask yourself some important questions:

        • Do I need to use this much?
        • Is there a reusable or recyclable alternative to this disposable material?
        • Do I really need all of these copies when I end up immediately recycling some of them anyway?
        • What can I do to reduce the amount of garbage generated in my work area?

By paying attention to what is produced on a daily basis, we will see a decrease in total solid waste and an increase in the amount of recyclables collected.

1 Ton of Recycled Paper

  • Saves approximately 17 trees
  • Saves enough energy to power the average home for six months
  • Keeps almost 60 lbs of effluents out of the air
  • Eliminates 3 cu yds of landfill material and reduces the need for more landfills
  • Saves 7,000 gallons of water
  • Turns "trash" into valuable resources, protecting natural resources from being wasted
  • Saves taxpayers' money on waste disposal

WCU Recycling Report

Recycled Items 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010
Single Stream                 8.86 11.33
Office Paper             13.98 19.72 14.91 21.19
Mixed Paper 131.10 132.80 127.54 85.70 114.70 96.10 26.22 51.83 67.37 55.29
Cardboard 81.70 68.00 46.70 55.00 38.70 40.70   82.78 81.33 63.92
Commingled 28.97 23.75 9.80 18.00 19.20 18.50 9.04 10.18 24.12 14.86
Flourescent Tubes             3.40 1.46 2.83 0
Computer Components             4.99   12.73 2.79
Toner Cartridges               0.19 0.68 0.44
Tires 0.00 6.00 2.45 1.50 1.20 1.00 0.68 0.71 1.85 1.85
Lead Acid Batteries             0.84 0.67 0.67 0.67
Motor Oil             0.72 0.81 0.81 0.81
Scrap Metal     14.60 6.75 4.30 3.50 18.40 5.73 22.87 78.96
Construction Debris             40.00   31.7 1561.58
Yard Waste 24.50 25.00 26.50 20.10 17.80 2.50 2.50 50.00 25 25
Misc. Materials ** 22.72 42.00 38.00       0.65 0.26 10.47 5.57
Total Recycled (Tons) 288.99 297.55 265.59 187.05 195.90 162.30 121.42 224.34 306.20 1,844.26
Total Landfilled Waste   1792.82 1677.34 1417.54  
Waste Diversion Rate   6.34% 11.80% 17.76% 100.00%
Misc. Materials ** Column figures could include: anti-freeze, lithium batteries, ballasts and lead.

We welcome your questions and comments. Please call the RECYCLING HOTLINE at x2512

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