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Vanderbilt campus expands plastic recycling

Posted by on Monday, February 20, 2012 in News, Waste & Recycling.

Just in time for a strong finish in RecycleMania, the Vanderbilt campus recycling program is expanding plastics recycling to include all plastic containers. Previous recycling vendor restrictions only allowed for recycling plastic bottles with resin codes 1 and 2 in the past on Vanderbilt’s main academic campus and in student areas. The campus recycling program could not recycle plastics with resin codes 3-7. Vanderbilt’s new partnership with Waste Management Inc. now allows for the collection of all plastics, regardless of what type.

So what plastics can and cannot be recycled in the new system?

  • YES: Plastic containers, cups, bottles, bottle tops and lids (please rinse!)
  • NO: Food or liquids; styrofoam; plastic bags or film; plastic strapping; motor oil, or hazardous chemical containers

According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the United States recycled only 12% of all plastic containers and packaging in 2010. With expanded plastics recycling on campus, Vanderbilt can do even more to contribute to increased recycling rates and diminish our impact on the local landfill.

This improvement to the campus recycling program brings it in line with the VUMC recycling program that has accepted all plastics for several years. Signs throughout campus are still being updated, so please feel free to recycle any plastic containers in any plastics recycling bin regardless of signage.

Recyclemania is a friendly national recycling competition among colleges and universities sponsored by the College and University Recycling Coalition, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, and Keep America Beautiful. The 2012 competition runs February 3-March 31.

For more information about recycling at Vanderbilt, visit SustainVU, contact or call 343-2784 (E.ARTH on campus).


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