Category Archives: Tips

Talking Trash in the Dugout – New Year! New System!

There is a new, simpler waste-sorting system in the Dugout this year.

What’s changed? We are still composting food scraps, but can no longer accept soiled plates and other compostable materials together with food scraps due to a change in the disposal system.

The good news is that it’s easier to know what goes in each waste bin: Food Waste (food only),Recycling (same as across campus), and Trash (anything that is soiled or is not food waste or recyclable).

Not sure where to toss your waste? When in doubt, throw it out (in TRASH) to avoid accidentally contaminating the Food Waste and Recycling bins.

Remember: You Can Recycle Textiles on Campus

Members of the campus community can recycle textiles at residence hall desks, the Shirk Center (by Wellness), Hansen Student Center (at the main entrance) and Memorial Center (by the Main Desk) in round bins.

A textile is any item made from cloth or an artificial fabric like vinyl. Textiles are used for clothing, linens, bedding, upholstery, curtains, carpets and other items. Any textile item, even if it’s worn, torn, or stained, can be recycled. You can even recycle a single shoe! Items simply need to be clean and dry.

Some facts:

  • The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that the average person throws away 70 pounds of clothing per year. That adds up to 3.8 billion pounds of unnecessary waste added to our landfills.
  • Clothing and household textiles currently make up 5.2% of the waste in landfills.
  • Recycling clothing and textiles decreases the use of natural resources, such as water used in growing crops and petroleum used in creating new clothing and textiles.
  • It also decreases the need for chemicals used in manufacturing new textiles and the pollution caused by the manufacturing process.

How are recycled textiles used?

  • Resold at charities’ secondhand clothing stores
  • Sent to developing countries
  • Turned into wiping cloths, which are used in a variety of industries and businesses (everything from manufacturers to repair shops, construction industries, stores, and maintenance and custodial departments)
  • Processed back into fibers and turned into paper, yarn, insulation, carpet padding, and other items


Single Stream Recycling Comes to IWU

This summer, IWU has changed recycling contractors and can now offer single stream recycling on campus. You no longer need to separate paper and containers, but rather you can place all recyclable materials into one bin.

In the public areas, you can place plastic, glass, aluminum, and paper into the bins marked “Single Stream.”

Acceptable containers include:

  • Plastics #1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 7, including containers for milk, water, soda, detergent, shampoo, salad dressings, medicine bottles, etc. (lids included)
  • Plastic 6-pack and 12-pack ring carriers (must be cut up)
  • Grocery containers #4 and #5 (plastic resin) such as margarine tubs, yogurt cups, and frozen dessert cups
  • Glass bottles and jars: clear, brown, blue, or green (metal lids included)
  • Aluminum: cans, clean disposable trays, pans, and foil
  • Steel cans, including empty aerosol cans
  • Juice boxes (no straws)
  • Gable-top milk and OJ cartons

Acceptable paper items include:

  • Newspapers, including all advertising inserts
  • Paperboard, such as cereal boxes, frozen food boxes, and tissue boxes
  • Cardboard
  • Computer paper, loose leaf paper, and gift wrap
  • Soft-cover books and hard-cover books
  • Junk mail and envelopes (including those with windows)
  • Paper egg cartons
  • Telephone books
  • Magazines

In your office, you can still use the paper boxes previously used “for paper only”  for all recyclable materials.   If you would like a new recycling container for your office, please contact Dale Conover in Physical Plant ( and he will arrange for a new container to be delivered.

If you have any questions or comments about the program, please feel free to contact Carl Teichman (


Single-Stream Recycling

Single-stream recycling is coming to campus this fall. With the community’s switch to single-stream recycling, all types of recyclables — paper, cans and bottles — can be placed in a single container.

The campus plan for accommodating single-stream recycling will be based on a report prepared by Megan George ’13 as an Environmental Studies senior seminar project, available on Digital Commons.

Battery Recycling Available On Campus

Batteries, cell phones and ink cartridges can be recycled on campus at either residence hall desks or the Information Technology Services House.

Additionally, ITS will accept old cell phones and ink cartridges. University departments can have these items sent to ITS for disposal.